At the close of the first half of 2024, optimism is rising among American businesses. But at the same time, access to capital appears to be tightening, according to data from a recent survey of over 5,000 businesses:

  • 72% of companies think it’s harder to borrow money than a year ago
  • 91% feel it’s harder than it was two years ago
  • Only 14% of businesses feel their current credit lines are sufficient to fund growth plans
  • Less than 20% would even approach their primary deposit relationship for a lending solution right now

On one hand, companies feel greater confidence about acting on growth plans. On the other, finding the capital to do so has gotten more difficult.

A shifting terrain marked by higher interest rates, cost pressures, and revenue fluctuations, coupled with tightening access to credit, might be expected to throw cold water on the growth plans of businesses. In reality, though, 65% of firms are planning to increase growth investments in 2024.

How? In times like these, creative approaches to access capital are a must. Here are two companies that have successfully navigated disruptions using equipment financing to fuel their expansion:

“In 2023, we encountered firsthand the effects of credit tightening. Despite 18 years in business, our lender unexpectedly retreated. Left without viable options, we forged a relationship with a dedicated equipment finance company, opening up a wealth of untapped opportunities. This partnership nearly doubled our access to capital, introduced new financing flexibilities, enabled us to refinance much of our existing debt with the new lender, and preserved other lending options for working capital. In 2024, we anticipate opening three new locations that will generate positive cash flow from day one. None of this would have been possible without the equipment financing relationship.”
– $18MM commercial services contractor

“We’ve traditionally relied on cash payments for technology acquisitions. However, as our firm evolved to handle more high-profile contingency-based cases, revenue streams became more unpredictable. When the need arose to invest in advanced conference rooms and remote work technologies, we hesitated at the substantial cash outlay and instead established a leasing relationship with an equipment finance company. Predictable payment schedules associated with equipment financing facilitated improved cash flow management and forecasting. This allowed us to budget effectively, understanding monthly or periodic equipment-related expenses, thereby enhancing financial stability and enabling better decision-making.”
– $11MM legal firm