B2B Payments

The B2B Relationship In Jeopardy

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Data from the world of B2B finance flowed in from across the globe this week. Small business lenders touted their high-volume milestones, and researchers pointed to a massive spike in FinTech investments.

But even as companies witness more accessible working capital and financing solutions, that doesn’t guarantee success. Analysis uncovered a few spots where the buyer-supplier relationship is in jeopardy, from failed contract negotiations, to fake supplier invoices, to procurement officials ready to ditch their suppliers. We break down all the numbers below.

$13.8 billion worth of investment landed at FinTech startups last year, representing a more than 100 percent increase in the volume of investment for this segment. Researchers at KPMG International and CB Insights counted 653 deals in 2015, the majority of which came from venture capitalists and private equity firms, reports said. Researchers pointed to the strength of FinTech investments despite a slump in Q4 of 2015, with investors growing concerned over market volatility at the time. Analysts added that they don’t predict that slump to continue into this year, however.

10,000 businesses have accessed financing via Swift Capital, the company said in its most recent financial report. The firm detailed its growth over 2015, reporting 87 percent year-over-year revenue expansion and a milestone of providing more than $500 million to SMEs. Last August, the company added, it surpassed another benchmark of providing an average of $1 million a day for small businesses.

$30 million in financing has landed with SMEs from FundThrough, the invoice financing company stated last week. It’s a figure that represents tenfold growth for the company in the last year. The Canadian-based firm launched in 2014 and said its recent growth represents heightened demand for alternative financing among the nation’s SMEs, especially as businesses are faced with up to 120-day payment periods when they land a large corporate client.

72% of SMEs have received bogus invoices in the U.K., finds new analysis from the Institute of Directors. The research, released last week, uncovers just how vulnerable smaller businesses are to scammers that infiltrate B2B payments networks. Analysts also found that a third of companies surveyed “experienced damage due to a cyberattack that interrupted business,” while 11 percent reported a financial loss because of hackers. Industry experts are warning small business owners to take precautions, including measures to ensure that any change of bank account details provided by a supplier is validated.

71% of corporate clients are willing to ditch their suppliers, concluded a recent Gallup poll. That means just 29 percent of corporate customers surveyed said they are emotionally and psychologically attached to their suppliers and vendors. The culprit behind the data, Gallup noted, is that suppliers are failing to adequately address the customer service demands of their corporate clients; one-fifth of businesses said they had experienced a problem with either their supplier or its products and services. Only 5 percent of them were “very satisfied” in how that supplier handled the issue.

66% of CFOs in Canada say optimizing cash flow is more important this year than it was in 2015, American Express and CFO Research concluded in their ninth annual Global Business & Spending Monitor. Revenues are on the rise for Canadian firms, but uncertainty about the global economic climate has financial managers in this market focusing on domestic operations, the report also found. Optimism has dipped a bit, too, but researchers said Canadian CFOs are becoming more focused on growth via targeted investments. In 2015, 70 percent of CFOs said access to capital was the top factor behind their growth; it dipped to just 40 percent in 2016, researchers added.

44% of B2B procurement deals that fall through can see future success as decision-makers said they would consider a losing vendor for future deals. A report published last week by Primary Intelligence said this finding suggests that B2B vendors have an opportunity to still ink a contract — but only if they continue the relationship. The analysis was part of a broader initiative to look at buyer loyalty in B2B procurement, finding that software vendors struggle the most with keeping their clients loyal. Geographically, EMEA corporate buyers are less brand-loyal than those in North America, whose procurement officials are 48 percent more likely to recommend a vendor to others than their EMEA counterparts.

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