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How Purchase Order Funding Empowers New Businesses in South Africa

Purchase order funding provides a valuable source of financing for new and growing businesses in South Africa. Here are some key ways this type of financing can empower entrepreneurs:

Securing Ongoing Orders

– Purchase order funding allows businesses to accept large orders from new customers or suppliers even if they lack the working capital to fulfill them initially. By financing the upfront inventory and production costs, businesses can take on more orders and generate ongoing revenue streams.

– This enables new businesses to establish relationships with major customers and suppliers early on. Fulfilling orders promptly and reliably builds trust and credibility with buyers.

– With the influx of capital from purchase order funding, businesses can meet delivery timelines consistently. This improves their reputation and positions them as a dependable supplier.

– By accepting larger orders, businesses can benefit from economies of scale and improved profit margins on production costs. This makes growth more sustainable.

Expanding Operations

– The influx of capital from purchase order funding can be used to invest in expanded facilities, equipment, and staff.

– Businesses can ramp up operations to meet increased demand instead of turning customers away due to lack of capacity.

– The improved cash flow allows entrepreneurs to make strategic growth investments like upgrading technology, systems, and operational processes.

– Funding frees up working capital to devote to sales, marketing initiatives, and entering new markets.

– It enables bringing on specialists and experienced managers to build organizational capabilities.

Growing Revenue

– Fulfilling larger orders leads directly to higher revenues for the business. With improved cash flow, businesses can also devote more resources to sales and marketing to drive further growth.

– The funding helps businesses get over short-term cash crunches to realize their full revenue potential. Sales and profits are not constrained by limited access to capital.

– Entrepreneurs can reinvest the profits from funded purchase orders into further expanding the business. Growth builds on itself.

– Funding enables startups and younger firms to compete with larger players for major contracts. This accelerates growth.

– By fulfilling more orders sooner, businesses can multiply sales volumes and negotiate better deals with suppliers.

In summary, purchase order funding provides South African entrepreneurs with the capital they need to accept ongoing orders, expand strategically, and accelerate revenue growth during the crucial startup and growth phases. By bridging short-term cash flow gaps, this financing empowers new businesses to get over the common hurdles faced by early-stage companies.

How It Works

The purchase order funding process involves three main parties:

– The business seeking funding
– The purchase order funder
– The supplier

It works as follows:

1. The business receives a large purchase order from a new customer.

2. The business submits the purchase order and supplier quote to the funder.

3. The funder evaluates the order details and approves funding if deemed qualified.

4. The funder pays the supplier directly on behalf of the business.

5. The supplier fulfills the order for the customer.

6. The customer pays the funder when they receive the shipment.

7. The funder deducts their fees and sends the balance payment to the business.

Qualification Criteria

While requirements vary between funders, some typical criteria for approval include:

– Purchase order value above a minimum threshold (e.g. R100,000)

– Creditworthy business customer with good payment history

– Gross profit margin on order of at least 20%

– Non-cancellable purchase order

– Reputable, capable supplier

– Business has expertise in fulfilling similar orders

Pros and Cons

Some key advantages of purchase order funding include:


– Quick access to capital to fulfill orders
– No need for business collateral or assets
– Repaid from customer invoices, not fixed installments
– Enables taking on more sales and growing faster
– Maintains positive supplier relationships


– Higher financing costs than traditional loans
– Need very strong customer creditworthiness
– Little flexibility in how funds are used

In conclusion, purchase order funding can provide critical working capital to empower entrepreneurs to accept major orders, expand strategically, and accelerate growth during the early stages of business formation. By enabling startups to finance large orders and establish relationships with key accounts, it helps them gain a competitive foothold in the market faster. When utilized strategically, this form of financing can give South Africa’s emerging businesses the launch pad they need to scale and maximize success.

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