Invoice Financing vs Factoring

Invoice Factoring vs. Invoice Financing SummaryKnowing the differences between invoice factoring and invoice financing, as well as understanding each of them separately, is key to any modern-day business owner.

Businesses often need extra cash to maintain operations or take advantage of opportunities. One way to get the funds they need is to use invoice factoring or invoice financing. Both of these methods involve selling outstanding invoices at a discounted rate in order to receive payment immediately.

However, there are some key differences between the two options. Invoice factoring involves selling the entire invoice and turning over collections to the factor. In contrast, with invoice financing, the business retains control of collections and only sells a portion of the invoice.

As a result, businesses should carefully consider their needs before choosing between invoice factoring and invoice financing.

The greater your level of knowledge is, the easier time you will have funding your business venture in times of need. Read on further to discover the positives and negatives of each, as well as a collection of comparisons of the two.

Difference between Invoice Financing and Invoice Factoring

Invoice financing and invoice factoring are two financing options available to businesses that need access to working capital. While both options involve using outstanding invoices to generate cash flow, there are significant differences between the two.

Invoice financing allows businesses to borrow money against their unpaid invoices, giving them immediate access to cash. In this scenario, the business retains control of its accounts receivable, and the lender does not collect payments from customers. Instead, the business is responsible for collecting payment from its customers and repaying the loan according to the agreed-upon terms.

Invoice factoring, on the other hand, involves selling unpaid invoices to a factoring company at a discount in exchange for immediate cash. The factoring company then assumes responsibility for collecting payment from customers, which can be beneficial for businesses that may not have the resources to manage their accounts receivable. However, the factoring company typically takes a percentage of the invoice amount as a fee, which can reduce the overall amount of cash the business receives.

What is Invoice Financing?

Invoice financing is a type of funding that enables businesses to access funds tied up in unpaid customer invoices. It is an effective cash flow solution for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) that face financial constraints due to slow-paying customers. Invoice financing can help businesses to bridge the gap between the time they issue invoices and the time they receive payment, allowing them to maintain their operations and take on new opportunities.

In simple terms, invoice financing involves a third-party financing company purchasing a business’s outstanding invoices at a discounted rate, providing the business with a lump sum of cash upfront. The financing company then collects the payments from the business’s customers and remits the balance to the business, minus a financing fee. This financing method allows businesses to receive immediate payment for their outstanding invoices, improving their cash flow and enabling them to reinvest in their operations.

What is Invoice Factoring?

Invoice factoring is another type of financing solution that businesses can consider. In invoice factoring, a company sells its accounts receivable to a third-party financing company, known as a factoring company, at a discount. The factoring company then assumes the responsibility of collecting the outstanding invoices from the business’s customers. In exchange for this service, the factoring company pays the business a percentage of the total invoice value upfront, typically ranging from 70% to 90%.

One key difference between invoice financing and invoice factoring is the degree of control the business has over its accounts receivable. With invoice financing, the business retains full control over its invoicing and collections process. In contrast, with invoice factoring, the factoring company takes over the collections process and interacts directly with the business’s customers. This can potentially affect the relationship between the business and its customers, as the customers may view the factoring company as an outside third party instead of the business itself.

Invoice Factoring vs Invoice Financing: The summary 


Invoice Financing

Invoice Factoring

Typical Initial Advance

80% of the invoice value

85% to 90% of the invoice value

Typical Fee

1% to 3% per month

2% to 4.5% per month

Who Owns the Invoice?

Your business

The factoring company

Who Collects on the Invoice?

Your business

The factoring company

Pros of invoice financing and factoring

Invoice financing and factoring are two financing options that can benefit businesses in different ways. Here are some pros of both:

Pros of invoice financing:

  • Improved cash flow: Invoice financing provides businesses with quick access to cash by using their outstanding invoices as collateral, improving their cash flow and allowing them to take advantage of new opportunities.
  • Lower risk: As invoice financing is secured against the invoices, the risk is lower for the lender compared to other types of unsecured loans.
  • No need for collateral: Unlike traditional bank loans, invoice financing does not require businesses to provide collateral.

Pros of invoice factoring:

  • Reduced administration: Invoice factoring can take over the administration of a company’s invoices, such as chasing up payments and managing credit control.
  • No debt incurred: Factoring is not a loan, but rather a purchase of a company’s invoices, which means no additional debt is incurred.
  • Higher funding availability: Factoring can provide higher funding amounts compared to invoice financing, as it can cover up to 90% of the invoice value.

Cons of invoice financing and factoring

Here are some cons of both:

Cons of Invoice Financing:

  • Higher costs than traditional loans: Invoice financing companies may charge higher fees or interest rates than traditional bank loans.
  • Limited to receivables: Invoice financing only provides funding based on outstanding invoices, limiting the amount of available funding and requiring ongoing sales to generate cash flow.

Cons of Invoice Factoring:

  • Loss of control over accounts receivable: The factoring company takes over the collection process and communication with customers, which could negatively impact the business-customer relationship.
  • Potential damage to reputation: Some customers may perceive invoice factoring as a sign of financial instability, which could harm the business’s reputation.

It is important to weigh the pros and cons of both invoice financing and factoring before deciding which option is best for your business. While both can provide much-needed cash flow, they come with their own unique advantages and drawbacks.

Invoice financing vs. factoring: Which is right for my business

When it comes to choosing between invoice financing and factoring, there are several factors that should be considered to determine which option is the best fit for your business. Here are some key points to keep in mind:

  1. Cash flow needs: If your business needs cash quickly, invoice factoring may be the better option as you can get funding faster. However, if you can wait a bit longer for funding, invoice financing may be a better choice as it typically offers lower fees and interest rates.
  2. Control over customer relationships: With invoice financing, you retain control over your customer relationships as you continue to handle the invoicing and collection process. In contrast, with invoice factoring, the factoring company takes over this process, which could potentially harm your customer relationships. If maintaining control over customer relationships is important to your business, invoice financing may be the better choice.

Ultimately, the choice between invoice financing and factoring will depend on your business’s unique needs and priorities. It may be helpful to consult with a financial advisor or invoice financing provider to determine which option is the best fit for your business.

Understanding the Difference Between Invoice Factoring and Invoice Financing

Read more: Myths about invoice factoring


In conclusion, both invoice financing and invoice factoring are viable options for businesses seeking to improve their cash flow. While invoice financing provides businesses with quick access to cash and allows them to maintain control over their invoices, invoice factoring provides businesses with a more comprehensive solution that includes credit control and collections services. Ultimately, the decision between the two comes down to the specific needs and circumstances of the business.

It is important for business owners to carefully evaluate their options and consider factors such as their creditworthiness, the size of their invoices, and their desire for control and flexibility before choosing between invoice financing and invoice factoring. With the right approach, either option can help businesses overcome cash flow challenges and achieve their growth objectives.

Business Finance specialist at Invoice funding | + posts

Seasoned professional with a strong passion for the world of business finance. With over twenty years of dedicated experience in the field, my journey into the world of business finance began with a relentless curiosity for understanding the intricate workings of financial systems.

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