- Sources of finance refer to the various methods that businesses can use to obtain funding for their operations.
- Financing is necessary for businesses to invest in equipment, inventory, research and development, and other areas that can help them grow and remain competitive.
- In general, sources of finance can be divided into two main categories: internal and external.
- Within each category, there are various subcategories that businesses can consider when seeking financing.
Internal Sources of Finance:
- Internal sources of finance are funds that a business generates from within its own operations.
- These sources include:
- Retained earnings: This refers to profits that a business chooses to keep rather than distribute as dividends to shareholders. By retaining earnings, a business can use the funds to invest in growth opportunities.
- Sale of assets: A business can sell assets such as equipment or property to generate cash.
- Reduction in working capital: A business can reduce its working capital by selling inventory, collecting receivables, or negotiating longer payment terms with suppliers.
External Sources of Finance:
- External sources of finance refer to funds that a business obtains from outside sources.
- These sources include:
- Debt financing: This involves borrowing money from lenders such as banks, credit unions, or other financial institutions. Debt financing can be short-term (such as a line of credit) or long-term (such as a mortgage).
- Equity financing: This involves selling ownership of the business to investors in exchange for funding. Equity financing can come from venture capitalists, angel investors, or through an initial public offering (IPO).
- Grants and subsidies: Some businesses may be eligible for grants or subsidies from government agencies or non-profit organizations. These funds do not have to be repaid and can be used for specific purposes such as research and development or job creation.
- Crowdfunding: This involves raising small amounts of money from a large number of individuals through online platforms. Crowdfunding can be used for a variety of purposes such as launching a new product or supporting a social cause.
Other ways of dividing sources of finance:
- Sources of finance can also be divided into using other means/criteria
- Short-term vs. long-term: This refers to the length of time that the funds will be borrowed. Short-term financing is typically used to cover immediate needs such as payroll or inventory purchases, while long-term financing is used for larger investments such as equipment or real estate.
- Debt vs. equity: Debt financing involves borrowing money that must be repaid with interest, while equity financing involves selling ownership in the business.
- Secured vs. unsecured: Secured financing requires collateral, such as property or equipment, to be pledged as security for the loan. Unsecured financing does not require collateral.