The Greater Philadelphia Region Chamber of Commerce report Mobilizing Greater Philadelphia’s Middle Market named “access to capital needed for growth” as one of the region’s most pressing needs. In response, local entrepreneur Jack Wilson is committing up to $25M to area businesses.
Philadelphia, PA – Jack Wilson, owner of local financing company Liquid Capital of Greater Philadelphia, has worked with small and mid-sized businesses for over 30 years. As a successful entrepreneur himself, he understands the challenges posed when a capital shortfall is all that’s stopping a business from delivering on its potential. That’s why he was ready to step in when he saw that funding access was becoming a major issue in his own business community.
On January 31, 2017, the Chamber of Commerce for Greater Philadelphia—where Jack’s business is located—released the results of a report based on extensive data collected on regional mid-market businesses. Titled Mobilizing Greater Philadelphia’s Middle Market: A Critical Engine for Regional Growth, the report takes a hard look at the nature and needs of the area’s mid-market businesses—a sector the report says “represents 27% of total employment despite accounting for only ~1% of companies” and “is a critical growth and employment engine for the economy.”
“When I read the report, the fact that the region’s mid-market businesses identified lack of effective access to capital as a major issue jumped out at me immediately,” Wilson asserts. “That’s what I do. That’s what Liquid Capital does. I knew right away we would be able to make a difference for local businesses that just need the right financial support to realize their goals.”
To make his vision of helping the local business community of the Greater Philadelphia area a reality, Wilson turned to Toreigh Stuart, CEO of Next Edge Capital; an investment management firm Liquid Capital works with. Stuart agreed to back and fund the initiative. “When we signed on to work with Liquid Capital, this is exactly the sort of project we had in mind,” declares Stuart. “We look for innovative opportunities for our investors—ones that go beyond stocks and bonds—and with Jack’s project and Liquid Capital’s unique funding approach, we can not only meet that commitment but hopefully be part of some real business success stories. It’s win-win-plus.”
Notably, this funding project includes B2B companies across most industries that are asset strong, and those that obtain funding can put it to whatever use they choose, from purchasing equipment or increasing advertising, to funding payroll or paying expenses. “I’m really excited about what some of our dynamic local businesses will be able to do,” says Wilson. “Good things are going to happen.” He is currently in discussions with local business associations interested in providing their members with access to this $25M pool of capital.
Liquid Capital has been providing trade finance and working capital solutions to businesses across North America for almost 20 years. “In a world of disruption and uncertainty, we at Liquid Capital think it’s important to offer small and medium sized businesses a stable and reliable source of financing”, says Sol Roter, President of Liquid Capital.
For more information, please contact Jack Wilson at 866- 584-8008 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
About Jack Wilson – Jack Wilson is the owner and principal of Liquid Capital of Greater Philadelphia who runs a certified minority business enterprise (MBE). An experienced entrepreneur and small business mentor, his background includes project management, finance, accounts receivables management, and sales and process management. Jack is a fair and ethical decision maker,who actively serves the local business community, and regularly participates in workshops and panel discussions.
About Liquid Capital – Liquid Capital is a global full-service working capital and trade finance company. It has the largest geographic footprint of alternative funding professionals in North America, offering clients a customized and flexible approach with local decision makers. It offers a complete range of solutions for all industries and provides immediate financing upon approval with no long-term contracts or hidden fees.
About Next Edge – Toreigh Stuart is the Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer for Next Edge Capital. With over two decades’ experience selecting and monitoring investment managers, he is passionate about finding unique investment ideas. Toreigh’s main role is assessing and structuring investment opportunities in an efficient manner, with a focus on ideas that emphasize increased risk-adjusted returns with low levels of correlation to traditional stocks and bonds.
Economic cycles – up and down – are inevitable, whether they’re national, regional or local. Businesses are cyclical too. One year you’re up; another year you’re down. Hopefully you’ve had a string of good years in between. The causes vary: Technology can make a product or service obsolete; an important client can go out of business; a new, aggressive competitor has moved into your territory.
Regardless of the timing or cause, preparation can mitigate negative effects. Strategic Marketing Consultant Neville Pokroy in his Mastermind Solutions Inc. article offers Six Steps To Overcoming The Economic Roller Coaster. Being proactive runs throughout his recommendations.
“If you plan for your next downturn, you ‘ll be in great shape when it comes,” Pokroy says. “In fact, if you’ve already put plans in place, and are executing those plans, you could prevent the next downturn from coming at all.” One aspect of his six steps is a customer-building process called AIDA:
- Catch their Attention
- Raise their Interest with reasons your product or service is what they want
- Create a Desire in them to buy from you
- Prompt buying Action when they’re ready
The more customers you invest in during good times provides more cushion for your business during downtimes. If there are personnel changes or cutbacks within some accounts, you’ll have a broader base to make up for the loss.
Big Change, Best Path: Successfully Managing Organizational Change with Wisdom, Analytics and Insight, authored by Accenture Strategy’ s Warren Parry and published by Kogan Page, helps organizations navigate complex organizational change using ground-breaking modeling to understand success and failure and to learn from it to become more agile and resilient.
In a whitepaper Turning Change Upside Down, Accenture Strategy addresses the “inherently messy, chaotic process” of change – whether it’s due to a downturn or an organizational evolution. Parry and his colleague Randy Wandmacher encourage “Fitness for Change,” describing it as “a requirement to be in business – not something you pay attention to only when change comes along.”
They write: “Developing this ‘fitness for change’ is similar to athletes training for a competition. Training in the right way – focusing on specific muscle groups for strength and flexibility, for example – will build up their conditioning, enabling them to withstand greater exertion without any drop in performance.”
When you prepare for change in good times and bad, you steady your business to take advantage of growth when it occurs and to strengthen your staff and loyal customers in the face of difficulties.
What would you do differently if you had to grow your business revenue by 10 times?
Would you keep doing the same thing you’re doing now? Would you maintain the same strategy? Do you think 10 times growth could be possible?
Startups thrive on 10 times growth
Silver was asked to fly to San Francisco to present his growth plans for the coming year to leadership. Being an enthusiastic new team lead, he set a bold vision for the year ahead and laid the strategic groundwork for 10% growth – what would be considered a remarkable achievement for most organizations.
In the boardroom that day, he explained how he and his team would achieve that growth, heads nodding around the room, and he was proud of what they had planned. But at the conclusion of his presentation, one of Airbnb’s most senior leaders questioned Silver.
‘What would you do differently if we asked you to achieve 10 times that growth?’
Silver was stumped. He stopped dead in his tracks and knew that this wasn’t just a question; it was a request.
Reimagining your entire business strategy
On the flight back home, Silver knew 10 times growth could never be achieved through a simple retooling of the existing strategy. He thought to himself, “If this seemingly impossible task was actually possible, what would my plan be?”
He had to scrap everything and start from the ground up.
Back home, he and his team began developing an entirely new plan in short order – this time focusing on an incredible growth trajectory over the same period of time.
His mantra during the ensuing year became one about the very idea of failure. “Failure is the tool I use to figure out if we’re being ambitious enough in the work we’re doing.”
The company’s vision for an aggressive approach to strategy and growth would teach him one of the biggest lessons of his career.
Can 10 times be achieved?
Skeptics would argue this would be an improbable achievement under most circumstances. And they might be right.
In Silver’s case, the team put their strategy into action and worked diligently throughout that year to achieve 10 times growth. And the result? They failed.
But failure was far from a bad thing. Although they didn’t achieve the ultimate goal, they did achieve nine times growth – and that amount to a near 800% improvement over where Silver’s original strategic plan would have put the division in the same timeframe.
By any account, that is a massive victory.
Thinking bigger in your organization
The lesson is clear. Any individual, team or entire company can achieve exceptional results well beyond their original goals, but it may require a fresh approach to their strategy. Step outside the comfort zone of your original plans and ask yourself what it would take to achieve 10 times your results.
Silver recommends thinking about the ‘what if’ questions in your own company. What if our market was bigger? What if we developed a completely new product? What if we attracted a sought-after demographic of customers?
By reimagining the possibilities of your company boundaries, you can put down the preconceived roadblocks and find alternate avenues to your strategy. The possibilities are infinite, and brainstorming ideas is one route to uncovering a potentially lucrative new direction.
Can your company achieve 10 times revenue? That is to be determined – the starting point is challenging yourself to come up with a new way of approaching your business that breaks out of the mold.
Are you capable of 10 times thinking? Absolutely.
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