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Trading Terms

What is financing? Meaning, examples

What is financing? Image of an investor monitoring charts on screen

By now, you must have heard about the term "financing". It is a concept that is used daily, but not everyone understands what it means. With the increasing access to credit and the growth of the financial industry, it is essential to understand the basics of financing. 

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So, what is financing?

Picture this: You have a brilliant idea, a dream to start a business or buy a new home. But you need money to turn that dream into reality. That's where financing comes in. It refers to the process of providing funds or capital to support various activities, such as purchasing assets, starting a business, or funding projects. It involves obtaining money from external sources, such as banks, investors, or financial institutions, and repaying the borrowed amount over time with interest. 

Financing can take different forms, including loans, credit lines, leasing, or equity investments. It plays a crucial role in facilitating economic growth, enabling individuals and organisations to achieve their financial goals and pursue opportunities.

Types of financing

There are several types of financing available to individuals and businesses. Some common types include:

  1. Debt financing: This involves borrowing money from a lender, such as a bank or financial institution, with the agreement to repay the borrowed amount plus interest over a specified period. Examples include bank loans, personal loans, and credit cards.
  2. Equity financing: In this type, funds are raised by selling a portion of ownership in the company to investors. These investors become shareholders and may receive returns on their investment through dividends or capital appreciation. Examples include venture capital and private equity investments.
  3. Crowdfunding: This type of financing involves raising small amounts of money from a large number of individuals through online platforms. It is commonly used by startups or creative projects to gather support and funding from a broader audience.
  4. Grants: Grants are non-repayable funds provided by government agencies, organisations, or foundations to support specific projects or initiatives. They are typically awarded based on eligibility criteria, such as research, education, or community development.
  5. Lease financing: Instead of outright purchasing an asset, lease financing allows individuals or businesses to use an asset for a specific period by paying regular lease payments. This is commonly seen in equipment leasing or vehicle leasing.
  6. Trade credit: Trade credit is a form of short-term financing where suppliers allow buyers to purchase goods or services on credit, usually with a specified payment period. It enables businesses to manage cash flow and fulfil their immediate needs without immediate payment.

Example

Let's consider an example of financing for a small business owner named Sarah who wants to expand her bakery. Sarah has a dream of opening a new branch in a bustling neighborhood, but she lacks the necessary funds. Here's how financing could help her:

  • Debt financing: Sarah approaches a bank and applies for a business loan. After evaluating her business plan, credit history, and financials, the bank approves her loan application. Sarah receives a lump sum amount from the bank, which she can use to lease a new space, purchase baking equipment, and hire additional staff. Over time, Sarah repays the loan in regular instalments, including interest.
  • Equity financing: Sarah decides to seek equity financing to fund her expansion. She prepares a proposal and pitches her business idea to potential investors, such as venture capitalists. Impressed by Sarah's bakery concept, an investor agrees to invest in her business in exchange for a certain percentage of ownership. This injection of capital allows Sarah to execute her expansion plans while sharing the risks and rewards with her investor.
  • Crowdfunding: Sarah explores alternative financing options and creates a crowdfunding campaign for her bakery expansion. She reaches out to her loyal customers, friends, and social media followers, explaining her growth plans and the benefits they can expect. People who resonate with her vision contribute small amounts of money, collectively adding up to the required funds. In return, Sarah offers incentives such as bakery discounts or special perks to her crowd funders.

These are just a few examples of how financing can work in practice. The specific type of financing chosen depends on factors such as Sarah's financial situation, risk tolerance, and the availability of different funding sources. Ultimately, financing enables Sarah to turn her bakery expansion dream into a reality by providing the necessary capital to support her growth plans.

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FAQs

1. How do I choose the right type of financing for my needs?

The choice of financing depends on factors such as the purpose of the funds, your financial situation, risk tolerance, and repayment capabilities. Consider evaluating the terms, interest rates, repayment schedules, and eligibility criteria of each option to make an informed decision.

2. How do I apply for a loan?

To apply for a loan, you typically need to gather required documentation (such as identification, financial statements, and business plans), approach a lender (bank, credit union, or online lender), complete an application form, and undergo a credit check. It's advisable to compare different lenders and their terms before making a decision.

3. What is the difference between debt and equity financing?

Debt financing involves borrowing money that you must repay with interest over time, while equity financing involves selling ownership shares in your business in exchange for investment capital. Debt financing creates a liability, while equity financing involves sharing ownership and potential profits with investors.

4. What is crowdfunding, and how does it work?

Crowdfunding is a method of raising funds by collecting small amounts of money from a large number of people, typically through online platforms. Entrepreneurs or individuals create campaigns, set funding goals, and offer rewards or incentives to contributors. If the funding goal is met, the funds are usually released to the creator.

5. Are grants available for individuals and businesses?

Yes, grants are available for various purposes, including research, education, community development, and business initiatives. These grants are typically offered by government agencies, non-profit organisations, or foundations, but they often have specific eligibility criteria and application processes.

Past performance does not guarantee or predict future performance. This article is offered for general information and does not constitute investment advice. Please be informed that currently, Skilling is only offering CFDs.

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You are about to visit: https://skilling.com/row/ which is operated by Skilling (Seychelles) Ltd, under the Financial Services Authority Seychelles License No: SD042. Before opening an account, please read the terms & conditions and contact our customer support for any questions.

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