ACI Funding’s main objective is to progress a client to an Indicative Term Sheet (ITS) at the earliest opportunity. The ITS will set out in detail the structure of the funding, the amount of funding, the due diligence (DD) cost, the interest rate, fees and repayment terms.
An ITS cannot be obtained unless or until a Business Plan with accurate Financial Projections for the duration of the client’s funding has been produced. That document is the key to obtaining an ITS and, therefore, the agreed Final Term Sheet which is a consolidated version of the ITS signed by us, the funder, and you, the client. After the signing of the Final Term Sheet, the DD process begins. Once a DD certificate is issued by the third-party DD team the final legal contracts are produced. Therefore, both we, the funder, and you, the client, have a common obstacle - DD.
Unfortunately, many projects fail the DD process. Most funders will leave the scene at that point and the client is then left with little or nothing to show for a significant period of time and not insubstantial costs. Generally speaking, projects fail the DD process because clients believe that they know everything about how the money works and they are emboldened by the fact that they are themselves very successful businessmen and women. The terms, and how the money works, are to some degree a moving walkway. The many blocks of money to which we have direct access give us regular and frequent updates on their favoured geographical locations and requirements along with interest rates, repayment terms etc. Once a Final Term Sheet has been agreed, that money and those terms are “locked-in”.
Many projects are dismissed because the client is not ready to go into DD or had no chance of ever passing DD based on the information that the client had submitted to their funder and yet that funder has allowed them to go forward to DD. ACI Partners take a different approach. By spending more time with clients in the Business Development phase of the funding we work together to ensure that their projects have the best possible chance of success. More than anything we aim to avoid projects failing the DD process wherever possible. Indeed, whenever we take on a new project we give our clients the opportunity to work with us to ensure that every angle has been addressed as far as is practicable. While we cannot guarantee that the third-party DD team will approve any particular project, we can and do ensure that the best possible and most appropriate submissions are made.
Consequently, clients who have decided to work with us have, to date, experienced 100% success in securing a Final Term Sheet and satisfactory DD approval.
Our process is very thorough and needs some time and investment during this Business Development phase. The first step on this journey is a mutual exchange of non-disclosure commitments followed by a mandatory and chargeable scoping exercise. In our experience the scoping exercise allows both parties to “get their hands around” the project and the work required to successfully approach funding. The value of this investment is speedy progress through DD, a well-funded project and a successful working relationship for many years.
For many, or most funders, the job is done once the contracts are signed and the funds deployed. This is not the ACI Partners way of doing business.
We see our role as “hosting” the money. We will have taken great care in assuring that the funds are going to a good home in the first instance, and we continue to reassure that during the term of the project until the funds have been fully repaid.
This is not an onerous requirement. We work collaboratively with our clients to support them in bringing their funded projects to a positive conclusion.
Our team and partners have years of practical business experience behind them enabling them to maintain an objective view of a client’s organisation, to assist in the decision-making process, make invaluable connections where appropriate and help to ensure the smooth running and conclusion of the project.