Creative Ways to Get Funding Without Going to the Bank


Are you having a tough time finding financing for your small business or just don’t know where to turn?

Today there are more financing opportunities out there than ever before — if you know where to look.

We tapped into the expertise of Linda Jenkins (pictured), CEO of the Gold Alliance Group, for some advice. She is the author of “Creative Financing: How to Get a Small Business Loan Without a Banker” and provides consulting for business owners seeking creative financing ideas.

According to Jenkins, “If you are trying to finance a startup or grow your business, don’t be afraid to approach a bank. Just realize that less than 30 percent of businesses are actually funded that way.”

Don’t get discouraged with those kinds of odds. This is where you have to get creative.

Don’t limit yourself to traditional banks. Instead, dig deeper. Find today’s new sources of capital and off-the-beaten-track places to find funding, Jenkins said.

In her book, Jenkins points out the differences between traditional loans and the new kind of funding today: peer-to-peer lending and crowdfunding.

Peer-to-peer lending is literally one person or peer loaning money to another. No banks.

Popular websites like Kiva, Lending Club and Prosper are dedicated to fostering peer-to-peer loans. This kind of lending has been successful in countries all around the world including England and New Zealand, but it still just catching on in the United States.

Another type of funding is crowdfunding. Crowdfunding goes to the potential customers or users of a product or service and asks for their financial support. Crowdfunding sites like GoFundMe, Kickstarter and Crowdfunder offer an even lower risk alternative for entrepreneurs, according to Jenkins.

creative financing

Jenkins recommends a free resource, “Crowdfunding: An Introduction.” She points out that crowdfunding doesn’t involve loans. The money need not be paid back. It is given to complete a project or create a product. Investors are buying into the end result.

Crowdfunding and peer-to-peer lending are becoming more popular avenues to access funding for your business. And the market is becoming quite competitive.

Here are three sites Jenkins recommends looking into, depending on your circumstances:

She recommends a resource for businesses owned by women called It has a reputation for educating and supporting business owners during the entire funding process.

Jenkins says, “It’s definitely an important resource for any female entrepreneur, and since women are starting businesses at twice the rate of males according to the Harvard Business Review, they are definitely serving a growing niche.” caters specifically to online merchants. They are an underserved niche that often has trouble getting financing through traditional methods. Kabbage provides cash advances at a flat rate based on monthly revenue, business credit rating, and your Amazon, Yahoo or eBay store rating.

And there’s, too. This is an online crowdlending platform which provides a quick turn-around on term loans. It could be a viable option if you run an established small business and need less than $250,000.

Jenkins emphasizes that your choice really depends on the profile of your business and its goal for more capital. A loan will lead you in one direction. If you’re looking to exchange equity for funds, there are sites and resources for that, too.

Of course, when in need of capital to grow your business, it’s natural to think first about going to a bank. But there are alternatives today.

Read “Creative Financing: How to Get a Small Business Loan Without a Banker” to learn about new and better sources for funding your business.

Crowded Street Photo via Shutterstock


Fino Paytech Set to Launch Payments Bank in Next 6 Months

Fino Paytech Set to Launch Payments Bank in Next 6 Months

Having bagged a Rs. 250-crore investment from BPCL, the first by an oil marketer in a Payments Bank, Fino Paytech is looking for at least one more round of fund infusion through stake sale before it launches the bank in about 6 months.

“We will have at least one more stake sale, after which we will proceed ahead to launching the bank,” Fino’s Managing Director and CEO Rishi Gupta told PTI.

He declined however to elaborate the quantum of infusion or the stake sale in the company, valued at over Rs. 1,200 crores, is looking at.

When asked about the new shareholders, Gupta hinted that it may be some new, non-financial player again, saying a payments bank is the start of differentiated banking and the stakeholders will also be from varied businesses.

It can be noted that till now, a majority of the eight Payments Bank aspirants are riding on complementarity with the telecom business and it is the first time that a OMC has come on board.

Some like Airtel’s tie-up with Kotak Mahindra Bank have already received the final nods while others are on the way. The RBI’s 18 month window to those who have been given in-principle nods is on till February 2017.

Gupta said Fino is waiting for the stake sales to go through before making proceeding ahead for the final nod. It can be noted that under the RBI norms, Fino is required to bring its foreign holding under 50 percent which is being done through the stake sales.


Fino’s shareholders include ICICI Bank, IFC, HAV3 holdings, The Blackstone Group and Intel Capital, besides BPCL.

Gupta said Fino will be targeting the “non-digital” population for the Payments Bank operations.

Apart from BPCL’s network of retail outlets which serve a slew of individual customers and fleet operators, the payments bank will also benefit from its home gas distribution business where the subsidies are transfered directly into bank accounts, Gupta said.

Fino’s bank will be competing with biggies including the Aditya Birla Group, Reliance Industries, Department of Posts, PayTM and Vodafone, among others in the payments bank space.

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tags: Digital Money, Fino Paytech, Online Payments, Payments Bank



On return to India, inform bank of changed residential status



I am 60 plus, and am returning to India after staying in the Gulf for 20 years. I have non-resident external (NRE) and foreign currency non-residential (FCNR) deposits, which mature at different times up to 2020. Considering that my status after return is resident not ordinarily resident (RONR) during the first 2 years (minimum), please advise on the following considering both income tax rules and Foreign Exchange Management Act (FEMA) regulations. i) Can I continue the NRE and FCNR deposits as such? If not, what options do I have? If I can continue, will the interest on these deposits be taxable? ii) Can I reinvest the maturing deposits during RONR status as NRE or FCNR deposits? If I can’t, while reinvesting them as resident deposits, can I avail the benefit of higher interest available to only resident senior citizens in banks and Senior Citizen Savings Scheme?

—Mohanlal R.

To answer your first question, when a non-resident Indian (NRI) returns to India, the onus is on him to notify his bank of the change in the status from non-resident to resident so that the bank account can be re-designated the bank accounts to resident account from NRE or FCNR. You have the option to re-designate these accounts either as resident account or transfer the funds to a Resident Foreign Currency (RFC) account. No penalties would be levied in the case of premature conversion of balances held in NRE and FCNR deposits into RFC accounts by NRIs on their return to India. Interest earned on the foreign currency deposit account is exempt till a person qualifies to be RNOR.

Also, the FCNR deposit accounts are permitted to be held till maturity of the deposits at the discretion of the bank.

The FCNR deposits on maturity will be converted into resident rupee deposit account or RFC account (if eligible) at the option of the account holder. The rate of interest on such account cannot exceed the rate payable on savings bank deposits held under RFC account scheme.

To answer your second question, under the exchange control law, you will most likely qualify as a person resident in India in the year of your return as you would come to stay in India with an intention to stay for an uncertain period. Hence, you will not be able to reinvest the matured deposits as NRE or FCNR deposits. As a resident senior citizen, you would be eligible for higher interest rates on the deposit accounts offered by the banks in India. For more details on the above, we recommend you to contact your bank.