Throwback Thursday

Today we fondly remember the great time we had at the Accenture Fintech Innovation Lab.  It was an incredible privilege to be part of the program. We had the opportunity to attend various banking events and present to some of the big banks. The value of this goes beyond having access to events and big banks. Being able to share the work space with some other amazing start-ups was so rewarding when it comes to inspiration and the energy this environment provided us with.

Mostly we are grateful to have had the chance to meet such talented people, that have inspired our creativity and given us insight into their incredible expertise.

We have come a long way since then and have exciting things happening over the next few weeks. Updates will follow so stay tuned!

Akoni helps businesses make the most of their cash. Register free at AkoniHub.com and follow us on Twitter

Key dates for your business in November

1st November – National Novel Writing Month

If you are running a coffee shop, this one is for you. Perhaps not as well-known as most events, independent coffee shops should delight in National Novel Writing Month and hosting their own Write-Ins. A month when aspiring authors set themselves the challenge of churning out a novel in 4 weeks, twice-weekly meet ups in coffee shops are the norm for these wannabe-writers, and offering them the perfect place to let their words and imagination run free might win you some very loyal customers.

5th November – Guy Fawkes Night

Let the glitter flow, a bit of sparkle on this day is entirely forgivable. Themed offers and tasty treats are sure to be appreciated – sticking a sparkler in your cupcakes might not be too subtle, but neither is a Catherine wheel.

24th November – Black Friday

Black Friday has immigrated to the UK from the US and it’s one you don’t want to miss. Use it to drive people to your business with limited-time offers on your goods. Email your customers in advance to present your offers and prepare them to shop with you.

27th November – Cyber Monday

Cyber Monday is the same thing as Black Friday, just on a different day. This is where your business’ online presence can come into its own, with marketing emails, social media posts and dedicated landing pages to your limited-time deals.

30th November – St. Andrew’s Day

He may not be as well-known as St. Patrick, but that’s all the more reasons your customers might appreciate you acknowledging this day. Add a bit of tartan, shortbread or deep-fried Mars bars to your offerings, novelty is a powerful tool for customer engagement.

Where’s the money? Some advice to improve your business’ Cash Flow

Cash flow is one of the issues SMEs struggle with the most. It is a topic much discussed and many owners of Small Businesses will confirm that it is a major concern of theirs.

In order to keep your business’ cash flowing you will have to make sure you are managing your cash properly. Careful cash management is generating revenues that bring in more cash than you are spending on your stock, your team and other business expenses and to manage this on an ongoing basis. It boils down to collecting data, reviewing and analysing it and then distributing cash where it is most needed. This may sound quite straight forward but most small and medium sized businesses fail to take the necessary steps in this regard.

1. Cash Forecasting

You should review your expenses such as rent, inventory, salaries and wages and taxes on a regular basis. It’s important to always know what costs you have and make a plan for the future as to what those costs will be and when they will hit your bank balance. Plan exactly when and how much you will be spending and always ask yourself why you are spending the money on each expense. This way you will be able to see what your necessary expenses are and which ones you could save on. There are various cash forecasting tools that can help you map out your spendings.

2. Monitor incoming payments

Check your accounts regularly for payments coming in. Late payments are a problem that many SMEs face and they can often be the reason for running low on cash. To avoid this make sure you invoice your customers promptly and to send invoices to the right person. Keep track of outstanding payments and take measures to chase late payments. There is nothing wrong with giving customers a nudge. A great, non-invasive, way of doing this is sending out reminder emails to encourage customers to pay outstanding bills. Visually appealing emails, with a simple call to action, such as “Pay Now”, linking to a payment site, will go a long way.

3. Dream big, stay humble

Having a grand vision of your business’ future is important and ambition is desired. However, it is important to stay realistic. The only certainty you have is that the future of any business is uncertain. Even if you can follow a particular patterns in earnings, it doesn’t mean that these will continue as such. You cannot predict the behaviour of potential customers and rates change all the time, in an unpredictable way. Therefore it is smart to expect the worst while working for the best, when managing your business’ cash.

4. Maximise the returns on your cash holdings

An aspect almost always neglected by SMEs is making sure that the business’ cash holdings are generating the maximum amount of returns, based on the best rates of the market. This is partially due to a lack of awareness of market activity, but mostly it is a lack of time and resources to scan the market for the best rates and then moving the business’ money around accordingly. Akoni stepped up and created a tool to automate this process. We provide a platform that scans the market for the best rates and cash can then be continuously allocated in a way that will maximise returns, in just a few clicks. In this way you can make extra money for your business while not adding another task to the to-do list.

If you follow these basic guidelines your business will be in a secure position to continue running and you can properly facilitate growth with healthy cash flow.

Akoni helps businesses make the most of their cash. Register free at AkoniHub.com and follow us on Twitter

 

 

Akoni at the Fintech Growth Forum Event by Innovative Finance

On the 19th of September Akoni took part in the inaugural Fintech Growth Forum, an event hosted by Innovative Finance. It was the first of many such events, gathering members of Innovative Finance and the wider Fintech community to create a space for dialogue on a variety of topics and the sharing of experiences in the field.

The event brought together over 400 delegates, more than 20 exhibitors and over 50 speakers. Akoni had a stand at the even as well, exhibiting our Cash Management product to attendees and CEO Felicia Meyerowitz Singh was one of the speakers. She spoke about Akoni’s innovative platform that finally enables SMEs to gain easy access to market information on the best rates for their cash holdings, levelling the playing field with large corporations. This lack of service by traditional banks can finally be fulfilled by technological innovation and the new possibilities that Open Banking offers.

We very much enjoyed catching up with old friends in the business and making new connections that offer new insights. Such events are valuable in terms of networking, finding out about new trends and opportunities for exposure. But they are also a lot of fun and we left feeling inspired and full of energy to keep moving forward.

 

Akoni helps businesses make the most of their cash. Register free at AkoniHub.com and follow us on Twitter

SA Chamber of Commerce and Akoni CPD Event 

Financial Management for SMEs

 

Date: 12 October 2017

Time: 8:30-11:00am

Registration and breakfast will be available from 8:30 onwards

Talks will begin at 9:00am ending at 13:00am with an opportunity for networking thereafter

Venue8 Greencoat Place, London SW1P 1PL. Please ask for Akoni on arrival.

To register please email munal@akonihub.com with your details.

Speakers:

1. Sharon Constancon; Genius Minds/SA Chamber of Commerce – FX risk management – how to own, manage and monitor FX risk.

Many SME’s import products or services and those exporting is growing in the goods and services industry.  The UK forex market is busy with brokers but relatively immature at the SME and corporate level in the UK. This is a complex and high risk area of a business and we help explain to you how to manage that risk and what alternatives there are to current actions.

2. Felicia Meyerowitz-Singh; Akoni– Cash Management

Akoni is an online cash management platform system for SMEs, allowing business to maximise their returns on cash deposits. Akoni will talk about cash management in general and then discuss the Akoni platform and how utilising our tools can maximise returns / improve overall business financial management.

3. Paul Surtess & Oliver Cummings; Capitalise – Current lending market and other related trends

Most businesses do not know that there are independent and alternatives to financing options with the high street banks. Capitalise uses in-house technology and data analytics to identify the best financing options available for UK businesses. Capitalise will discuss the current lending market and other related trends.·

Akoni helps businesses make the most of their cash. Register free at AkoniHub.com and follow us on Twitter