Improving the Profitability of Private Schools

Intimidated by the long-drawn process of getting a loan approved from conventional sources such as banks and traditional NBFCs, schools in India often discard the idea of borrowing funds for improvements on their campus. They try to make the most of their limited available funds, even if it means some degree of compromise on the quality of upgrades they had planned for the school.

Such an approach does not bring any benefits in the long term. In some cases, it may even backfire. For instance, if a school purchases low-quality furniture due to inadequate funds, which causes discomfort to students/staff using it for 6-7 hours every day, it may not only tarnish the school’s reputation but also cause serious health problems for the users.

What comes as a relief is that school loans are available on easy terms from FinTech companies that are essentially NBFCs but have a streamlined digital lending model for quick disbursal of funds. From a loan for buying school furniture to any other loan for school development, they can provide funds within a week of application receipt. The application needs to be substantiated by only the soft copies of a few documents verifying the credibility of the school.

So what are the benefits of leveraging a quick school loan from such a source? Does it lead to more profitability for the educational institution?

Here’s how the benefits of these loans unfold:

Enable improvements in infrastructure and purchase of new teaching equipment

FinTechs can provide a loan for school construction which helps the borrowing institution to divide students of the same class into different sections. With this, teachers can give more attention to each student, and the quality of teaching improves. The building structure can also be expanded when a school decides to admit more students or has to advance its existing classes to higher grades.

Schools can also take a loan for smart class facilities that are sought in every private school today and have become significant for a generation growing in the digital age. Other areas where a school loan can be used include furbishing of labs and computer rooms, purchase of games supplies and investment in vehicles for transportation services.

Invigorate interest in admissions

The most direct impact of bringing improvements in school facilities is a rise in the number of students who want to be a part of the institution. While senior students can understand the benefits of moving to an optimally planned school on their own, the parents of younger children who join an academy from kindergarten will also try to place their children in such a school. Provision of excellent facilities and keeping pace with new techniques that transform the learning environment is a natural incentive for more admissions in a school.

The good repute of a school can instantly attract students who move to the city due to their parents’ job transfers and have to find an educational institution in minimum time to avoid loss of studies in an ongoing academic session.

Collection of more fees

More admissions imply higher fee collection, and constant increase in this amount eventually leads to increased profitability for schools. A school loan taken to add new facilities and create better learning experiences has multiple benefits for schools that aim to be the leaders in delivering quality education services. Evidently, the increase in their earnings also helps them to repay the borrowed fund.

Whether you need a small loan for school furniture or up to Rs. 50 lakh to finance any development process in your school, Capital Float ensures that you get it most conveniently. Visit https://www.capitalfloat.com/school-finance to apply for your fund today.

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Secured Vs Unsecured Business Loans: The Difference and How it Matters for SMEs

To sustain their business growth, small and medium enterprises (SMEs) sometimes need additional working capital, and the most direct way of getting it is to apply for a loan.

With business loans coming from banks, non-banking finance companies (NBFCs) and private money lenders, SMEs have multiple sources to get funding for their operations and expansion. However, these credit options have their pros and cons and should be understood to choose the most helpful alternative.

Secured vs Unsecured Business Loan

Most companies are familiar with the idea of a secured business loan that requires them to offer the lender some collateral as a security against the funding provided. The credit here is issued when the borrower hypothecates a financial asset to the lender. The hypothecation ends only when the entire principal, together with interest and any other associated charges, is fully paid off.

Banks and most other conventional sources of finance are more willing to offer secured loans because from the lender’s point of view, these carry less risk than unsecured funding.

The main advantage for a borrower taking a secured business loan is that the interest on such credit is lower since a guarantee of their asset backs the loan.

Conversely, the challenge is that lenders, particularly banks, accept only selective assets as collateral. They need to ascertain that such an asset can be liquidated in minimum time in case the lender defaults on payment. Due to this condition, many SMEs find it difficult to get secured loans. They may not have assets that are considered as relevant or sufficiently valuable by the lender.

An unsecured business loan, on the other hand, is granted without any collateral. A non-banking finance company with a digital lending model offers such loans based on the creditworthiness of borrowers. If a business has a successful operational history of at least one year, and there are no blots on its previous credit history, it is eligible to get its unsecured business loan from a digitally operating NBFC, also known as a FinTech company.

For an enterprise that has no collateral for business loans, it is natural to opt for an unsecured loan even though the interest charged on this is slightly higher than on secured loans. However, some FinTech companies have created additional benefits with their policies that make unsecured business loan better than secured loans on multiple fronts.

While looking at secured vs unsecured business loan, these are some of the advantages that make the latter more valuable for start-ups and SMEs:

  • An unsecured business loan is available for short terms – borrowers can take a working capital loan for a tenure of less than one year and thus avoid the burden of debt on long term.
  • A FinTech lending company usually has a fully digital application process for its unsecured loans – it takes less than 10 minutes to complete the application and the documents to verify the information therein can also be uploaded online.
  • The time taken to receive funds from a FinTech in the business bank account is less than a week – the application is usually reviewed on the same day when it is submitted, and, if approved, the sum is disbursed in the next 2-3 business days.
  • A loan processing fee of up to 2% and the interest rate are usually the only charges on a FinTech company’s unsecured business loan – the borrowers do not have to pay any documentation fee, loan insurance premium, legal fee and other hidden charges.
  • The repayment options are more flexible for unsecured loans issued by FinTechs – the borrowers can pay off the loan sooner than the predetermined schedule, and maybe charged a nominal pre-closure charge for making the payment.

For an SME that does not have financial assets to hypothecate and needs faster access to cash, will find unsecured business loan better than secured funding.

Here is a summarised view of the features for Secured Vs Unsecured Business Loan:

Secured Business loans from Institutional lenders Unsecured business loans from FinTech companies
Collateral required Backed by a financial asset for collateral No collateral / Security
Advertised interest rate (annual) Between 12% and 24% Between 18% and 24%
Loan processing fee >= 2% <= 2%
Extra charges May have extra charges for documentation, loan insurance and other statutory requirements No extra or hidden charges
Time to get funds into account 1 to 6 weeks 72 hours
Loan application process Digital and paper-based, document-intensive loan application Fully digitalised loan application and document submission
Repayment of loan Only through EMIs Flexible repayment options

Capital Float is a leading FinTech company that asks for no collateral for business loans. We have customised our loans for a variety of business purposes and working capital needs. Our short-term unsecured business loans are issued purely on the creditworthiness of the borrowers and the potential of an organisation to pay back in time. We evaluate every loan application within minutes of its submission to provide the decision on the same day.

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If you have an attractive business opportunity to capitalise upon, do not put off your plans. Talk to a representative in our customer service team at 1860 419 0999 and avail yourself of the benefits of a loan without collateral.

Oct 24, 2018

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Overview of GST and Important Timelines

The Goods and Services Tax (GST) is proposed to be implemented from July 01, 2017, and will effectively change the face of indirect taxation in India. Some of the key benefits expected include a simpler and more transparent tax system that will reduce tax evasion and boost revenues; more competitive manufacturing, especially in the MSME sector, thanks to reduction in tax cascading; and improved GDP due to a wider coverage of goods and services. This attempt towards bringing to life a “One Nation, One Tax” legislation will have far-reaching implications on every citizen, and will impact business finance and personal finances too. This is especially true for SMEs, as they will see a direct impact on their working capital. It is therefore prudent to plan for this crucial event.

Here is all you need to know about the GST rollout.

What is GST

GST is a unified system for indirect taxation, leading to the establishment of a new four-tier indirect tax structure that replaces the existing indirect tax regime. Essentially, four new indirect tax slabs will come into effect, i.e., goods and services will hereafter be taxed according to the slabs of 5%, 12%, 18% or 28%.

Rate of Indirect Tax Goods/ Service
Exempt Goods of mass consumption such as grains and milk
5% Essential items such as edible oil, tea, coffee, insulin, incense sticks, etc. that are exempt from excise duty and are charged at a VAT of 5%. Certain processed foods like sauces, pickles, and preserves as well.
12% Goods currently taxed at 9% to 15% such as processed food and computers
18% Goods currently taxed between 15% and 21% (soaps, smartphones, utility electronic items and, industrial inputs).
28% Luxury goods such as SUVs, select consumables (aerated drinks, tobacco), white goods (AC, fridge) and goods that fall under the current tax bracket of 30% to 31%. Luxury and select consumables will attract an additional cess.

These four structural slabs allow a provision to charge a maximum of 40% GST rate, i.e., a combination of 20% Central GST and 20% state GST.

Services will be taxed at a standard or default tax rate of 18%. Only five luxury services, i.e., five-star hotels, movie tickets, racing and betting (racing and casinos) will fall in the 28% tax bucket. E-commerce companies will be subject to 1% tax collected at source.

The build-up to the GST: A track of timelines

The story began with the Central Government releasing the Revised Model GST Law for public purview on November 26, 2016, and the setting up of the GST Council to discuss and approve the Bill. Thereafter, the Council met on subsequent occasions to discuss and approve the section terms, and targeted a rollout date of April 01, 2017. The latest is a meeting held on 11th June, wherein the tax rates for 66 items have been reduced. A rollout date of July 01, 2017 has now been set. As a result, four legal bills have been presented and passed for different categories:

  • Central GST Bill (CGST): For supply of goods and services by the Central Government within the boundaries of a state.
  • Integrated GST Bill (IGST): For supply of goods and services between different states, carried out by the Central Government.
  • Union Territory GST Bill (UGST): For supply of goods and services in the Union Territories.
  • The Compensation Bill: To govern the provision of compensation for revenue losses brought on by GST implementation, over the next five years from implementation.

All four bills have been passed in the Lok Sabha and subsequently the Rajya Sabha after a series of changes at the Centre. These bills have received approvals from 16 state assemblies with Delhi being the most recent.

Rules and Acts under the GST

The Government is also in the process of driving the GST Council to put together rules and acts for GST implementation. Following are the GST rules passed till date: Composition Rules, Valuation Rules, Transition Rules, Input Tax Credit Rules, Invoice Rules, Payment Rules, Refund Rules, Registration Rules and Return Rules.

Proposed outcomes of the GST for the Government

According to Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, India will evolve to be a more tax-compliant society thanks to the GST. He also clarified that the GST would not lead to inflation, addressing the Opposition’s concerns in the Rajya Sabha.

Here are some of the key benefits of GST:

  • GST will cover the GDP more comprehensively by covering a wider base of goods and services A single indirect tax regime will be instrumental in removing cascading taxation, i.e., tax payment upon tax, or multiple taxation.
  • GST will eliminate any direct interaction between the assessing authority and the tax payer by standardizing and automating processes, and will interlink incentives for compliance, making the tax system more accountable.
  • Overall and on an average, tax slabs may see reductions and the industry may benefit from the greater cash flow that will ensue.

Despite these proposed gains, a closer look at the GST reveals certain drawbacks. Four slabs is a significant number of tax slabs for a unified tax regime, and the tax rates appear to be high. These factors are likely to lead to tax evasions and legal battles.

Proposed outcomes of the GST for tax payers and businesses

For businesses, the implications vary. The “Place of Supply” and the “Time of Supply” are two important considerations that businesses must reflect on.

Goods and service providers will be subject to the tax slab depending on the “Place of Supply”. If the “Place of Supply” is intra-state, then each company entity will need to register separately for the GST in each state of operation, and will be liable to a mix of CGST and the respective State’s SGST. For “Place of Supply” being inter-state, the business will need to register in the state of origin and avail IGST in the remaining states. This makes it imperative for businesses to register correctly to levy the appropriate taxation rate.

Business norms for supplier management will change, with input credit being made available to businesses, but compliance requirements will become more stringent, leading to additional costs for businesses. Businesses must therefore be prepared to plan their cash flows better in light of the GST implementation. This is particularly true with regards to input tax credit, which can have strong implications on working capital for SMEs. This might create a cash crunch in the short term, but will equalize over time.

With the GST rollout fast approaching, it is best to stay informed and be prepared for this sweeping change. We at Capital Float can help you do just that: Visit our GST blog to know more about GST and keep track of latest.

Oct 24, 2018

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Cashflow Management Tutorial for School Owners

Cashflow is the lifeblood of any organisation, including schools. Unlike most small and medium enterprises that have unstable revenue because of variations in customer purchases and seasonal cycles, schools are usually assured of a running income from the fees paid by the students each quarter. However, cashflow management is as serious a task for educational institutions as it is for any other business.

With the fee they receive, schools have to pay their teaching and administrative staff, maintain the campus, periodically purchase lab equipment, sports supplies, furniture and other items, and keep some reserves for unforeseen expenses. When money falls short of requirements, they may have to apply for loans from a school finance company. In addition to banks, FinTech organisations have stepped forward as significant providers of school finance in India.

Whether a school manages its operations with its earnings or takes the support of school finance, it is essential to handle the fund prudently. The following tips for cashflow management in schools can help the owners avoid severe financial constraints:

Anticipate future requirements: Will some students be leaving the school to change their board (CBSE, State Board, ISC, IGCSE) from the next academic year? Will you be hiring any new staff members? Does the school need to replace any furniture or teaching equipment? It is good to have a basic idea of such needs as they have an impact on your earnings and expenses. If you feel that the outflow of cash could be more than the inflow and reserve funds, it may be necessary to apply for school finance.

Make arrangements with vendors: If you have developed long-term relationships with the vendors who regularly supply lab materials, sports gear, canteen groceries and other provisions to your school, you can make occasional arrangements on payment terms. As an example, if your regular pay cycle from the receipt of invoice is 30 days, it can be extended to 45 days in a period when you are spending funds on additional works in the school.

Work to maximise cash inflows: With constant improvements in your education services, you can attract new students, which will have a positive impact on your earnings. Schools that have classes till Standard VIII but have a reasonably high strength of students can work with an education board to upgrade to Standard X or XII. To facilitate the construction of a new building and for additional campus amenities, you can apply for school finance by sending a quick digital application to a FinTech company. The revenue generated from fees paid by students in new upper classes will help you to pay off the borrowed amount and interest in small EMIs.

Stay connected to lenders: If despite your best efforts on cashflow management, money falls short of requirements, remember that funding for schools in India is available on easy terms from a FinTech school finance company. You can get a collateral-free loan, and you need to submit only the soft copies of eligibility proving documents when you choose a FinTech company as your lender.

Apply for Unsecured school loan

Capital Float is a friendly FinTech organisation providing school finance to recognised educational institutions that have functional classes till Grade VIII or above and collect a yearly fee of minimum Rs 75 lakh.

Oct 24, 2018