Zoya Malik, Group Editor, International Accounting Bulletin and The Accountant caught up with Perttu Jalkanen, Co-Founder and Chief Commercial Officer of AREX Markets presenting at the virtual DAF 2020 & Awards to hear about its solutions for providing access to alternative finance and lending to SMEs
Zoya Malik: What is the service your company offers to the accountancy industry?
Perttu Jalkanen: AREX offers data-driven “Invoice Financing As a Service” solution, which enables accountants consolidate their role as a holistic trusted financial advisor whilst generating a new attractive source of revenue and automating all invoice financing related manual tasks such as accounting entries.
Novel characteristics of the AREX solution include such benefits as a built-in credit insurance, pay per use, transparent and very competitive pricing, near real-time onboarding as well as transfer of funds on the same day.
AREX’s service integrates into the system of partners, such as major accountancy softwares and can also be white-labelled under accounting company’s own brand.
ZM: What is the topic of your presentation? Why is this this important now?
PJ: “Discussing the new business opportunities available to accountants and accountancy software firms as SMEs increasingly look for alternatives to traditional lenders.”
SME are in a critical situation, cash-flow is increasingly crucial on the back of the financial turmoil generated from COVID-19 and the growing impact and implications of Brexit to UK businesses.
The banking sector and traditional financiers have historically neglected the SMEs and are nowhere near to being able to provide the necessary financing SMEs need. The SME sector demand for new alternatives is driving the growth companies, such as AREX, which use sophisticated technology to lower the barriers of entry and offer competitive rates.
These changes in SME financing landscape create new business opportunities for accountants, while the role of the accountant is becoming the ever more relevant in guiding the SMEs through the changing landscape.
Accountants are in an enviable position to assist their SME clients navigate through their financing options and facilitate their client’s access to alternative financing solutions available so that SMEs can navigate through difficult times ahead and continue growing their businesses in the future.
ZM: What value is there for your organisation to partner with the DAF 2020 conference?
PJ: We are in the process of rolling out our services across Europe, with an aggressive expansion plan in the UK. The DAF 2020 is a crucial platform to showcase our solution as well as to educate the accounting community and software providers about AREX, the alternative financing landscape and how they can benefit.
ZM: How are you tackling Covid-19 challenges for your clients and partners?
PJ: We are providing much needed access to cash flow at a time when liquidity is crucial for the survival of SMEs, at the same time we are empowering the accountants to help their clients and gain a more relevant, tightly entwined relationship with their SME clients.
ZM: What are any new products and services your organisation is launching in H2 2020?
PJ: “Invoice Financing As a Service” partnership with some of the major accountancy software providers based in the UK will be rolled out in Q3. We expect to also launch our supply chain financing product later on in the year.