Blog | Financing

Need for Speed: How Fast Can SMEs Get Business Funding?

By J Leighton


July 8, 2024

For business owners who need to get business funding fast, short-term cash flow finance is your best bet. The good news is that, when your cash flow is temporarily in danger of slowing to a trickle, you can access business funding much faster than you might think. 

There are other benefits to having accessible cash flow finance solutions on hand. With liquidity to spare, growing businesses are prepared to get a jumpstart on the competition. Having fast, flexible funding options can also make businesses more resilient to market fluctuations. 

The key term here, however, is speed. While there are plenty of avenues that SMEs can pursue to get short-term finance, not all providers are able to turn around successful funding applications fast enough to get cash flowing in time to capitalise on time-sensitive opportunities. 

How long does it take to get business funding in South Africa? 

The length of time it takes to get business funding in South Africa depends on whether you approach a traditional or an alternative finance institution. Typically, it takes traditional banks and lenders a few weeks or more to approve cash flow financed solutions, not including the time it takes to clear complex qualification criteria and lengthy application processes. On the other hand, some alternative fintech providers can give the green light on funding in just a matter of hours. 

The decreasing demand for traditional financial services from SMEs combined with the rapid expansion of the alternative lending sector in South Africa indicates that most traditional funding avenues simply do not cater to the needs of growing businesses. The bottom line? Growing enterprises need speed and simplicity as much as they need capital. 

How does alternative financing allow SMEs to get business funding so fast? 

Traditional funders typically require prospective borrowers to supply extensive evidence of their creditworthiness, including personal and business financial statements, various documents, and proof of collateral. Conversely, alternative funders like Bridgement are leveraging the power of fintech to assess a business’s credit profile simply by submitting electronic copies of finance records or syncing seamlessly with its cloud-based accounting software records. 

Furthermore, most alternative lenders offer simplified digital application processes, meaning that business owners can apply for cash flow finance whenever suits them, wherever suits them. 

Not only does this require much less effort from the borrower, but it allows alternative lenders to act much, much more quickly on funding decisions. For instance, Bridgement’s fastest-ever approval time came down to just 14.4 minutes. 

Get fast and furiously flexible funding options from Bridgement 

If your growing business has a need for speed, then there are plenty of reasons why Bridgement is the ideal finance solutions provider for you: 

  • Simplified criteria makes it easier to unlock cash flow funding precisely when your growing business needs it the most 
  • Paperless application takes just 2 minutes to fill out online 
  • Obligation-free finance facilities; only pay for it when you use it 
  • No penalty fees for early settlement, meaning businesses can make use of short-term cash flow financing with relative cost-effectiveness 

Partner with a lender who understands what your business needs to keep growing and thriving. Apply for your Bridgement facility today and get cash flowing again in as little as a few hours. 


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