Asset-based lending (ABL) is a way for established businesses to finance rapid growth or big contracts, using assets such as invoices, inventory, equipment, machinery, or commercial property as security for a business loan.
This allows the business to maximise cash availability and serve bigger contracts, recruit or invest.
If you’re looking for a way to fund your business, you might be able to find it in your balance sheet — where cash is tied up in various assets. Asset-based lending (ABL) allows you to release this cash to fund an expansion project or simply accelerate day-to-day cash flow.
Asset-based lending uses your sales ledger and physical assets such as machinery, stock, and property. It’s suitable for larger businesses and corporates, and gives you the funds necessary for both cashflow stability and longer-term growth.
Many larger companies find that debtor balances are the biggest asset on the balance sheet. The trouble is, those owed funds often take weeks to turn into cash, particularly if you invoice on terms of 60 days or more, which seriously restricts growth potential.
ABL aims to solve this issue by lending based on the complete balance sheet of the business, whether that includes debtors, physical assets, inventory, or even intellectual property.
Can be more flexible than loans or overdrafts
Funding secured against the value of your assets
Use the finance for a wide range of business purposes
Debtor protection available, to safeguard against bad debts
Facilities grow with the business
Reduces administrative burden of separate finance facilities
Loan sizes for asset-based lending are normally quite large, which means there are fewer lenders at this higher end of the market. The good news is, this means lenders are far more likely to take a bespoke view of your business — without taking a ‘computer says no’ approach.
ABL can be a good solution for a wide range of business scenarios. It’s particularly useful when you require working capital finance for specific uses alongside more general cashflow finance. Here are some of the situations where ABL is popular:
Funding a large contract
Management buy-outs and buy-ins (MBOs and MBIs)
Mergers and acquisitions
Turnarounds and pre-packs
We work with dozens of lenders across the whole business finance market. If you’re looking for asset-based lending or thinking about your next move, we can help you find the right funding for your business.