In a recent article, AltFi put the spotlight on 5 invoice financing platforms in Australia – Waddle, Marketlend, Timelio, FundX and InvoiceX. Alongside these companies a number of others stand out down under and one of these is The Invoice Market (known as tim). tim claims to be a peer-to-peer invoice financier that aims to support the future of Australian businesses by providing them with tomorrow’s cash flow today.
The platform has recently announced several updates, including a new brand, a new website and a significant upgrade to its online client and funder platform. AltFi caught up with Angus Sedgwick, tim’s CEO and a veteran of the global financial services industry, to learn more about tim and the new brand.
Founded in 2014, tim is an invoice-discounting platform that connects businesses with private and institutional investors. The company taps into a network of sophisticated institutional and private investors that buy businesses’ current unpaid invoices, advancing 80% of their value usually within 24 hours. The balance comes back to businesses when their customers pay. Since inception, tim has cash flowed in excess $130 million of invoices.
According to Angus, the rebranding of its website has been undertaken to clarify to the market just how different tim’s service is. The tim boss revealed me a couple of the company’s major strengths. First and foremost, Angus was keen on highlighting that tim is a pure invoice-discounting platform, characterized by fairness and simplicity. Another unique characteristic seems to be its low cost of funds. The platform doesn’t apply application, set-up and on-going fees, but only a discount rate on the invoice amount of between 1.5% and 5% of the invoice face value. Lastly, Angus admitted that tim wouldn’t exist without its wholly proprietary technology that makes the invoice discounting process simple, quick and intuitive.
“Tim's singular focus is providing cash flow on invoices for SMEs in a highly efficient and competitive way. We make it simple for businesses, with just five easy steps to obtain funding. […] Tim has provided $130 million in cash flow funding to Australian businesses since we commenced business just 20 months ago. And, the significant demand for Tim's funding continues.”
The new website – www.theinvoicemarket.com.au – which has been launched with the branding, now offers significantly enhanced client and funder functionality. Angus listed a number of factors – critical to both clients and funders – that need to be considered when building a new platform.
“Clients are most concerned about speed, cost and reliability and for the funder, it’s the ability to see a very clear and comprehensive analysis of the risk being funded, plus the ongoing management of the transaction. Our platform seamlessly has a nexus between clients, tim and funders”.
During our chat, Angus also mentioned tim’s referral program. tim works with a wide range of professional referral partners and intermediaries – including accountants, personal bankers, finance brokers and financial planners – that seek to help their own clients get their cash flowing faster, with no registration or set-up fees. Referees get benefits from this process, such as full accreditation as a referral partner and an attractive remuneration incentive.
When asked about the future of invoice discounting in Australia, Angus admitted that the space has a huge growth potential, but more needs to be done in terms of market awareness. Indeed, businesses seem to be still unaware or sceptical about the benefits of this kind of service.
“The simple availability of a platform will not create business flow. Much work needs to be done at the coal face to educate businesses about this source of funding. Since establishing tim, we’ve invested considerable time in ensuring clients, and potential clients, appreciate the benefits of tim’s online platform. And it’s something we’ll continue to do.”