22/12/2021
11:26

Supply Chain Finance: a resource at a time of international instability

Taking part in and competing on international markets is fundamental for all SMEs. How global economics affects business models and the strategic choices of companies is constantly changing and the pandemic has highlighted, in some cases even inverted, the trends consolidating chains in recent years.

In order to handle the need caused by these global dynamics, the Supply Chain Finance solutions are required to effectively support SME businesses, guaranteeing operational flexibility when faced with the many, decidedly frequent, changes suffered by the chain.

The international scenario and response of Supply Chain Finance instruments

The pandemic has not affected the export volumes and the positioning of Italian SMEs, as was confirmed by the October edition of the Market Watch of Banca Ifis, in collaboration with Il Sole24Ore: 57% of the companies are still exporting, 2021 volumes saw a decided recovery compared to 2020 and the import figure is still stable.

However, the continuing blocking of international transport (see the Ever Given incident in 2020 and the block of Chinese ports in 2021), combined with difficulty in finding and the double-digit growth in the prices of raw materials and energy, are changing the geography of procurement channels: after years of delocalisation, there is now continual talk about reshoring, hence companies returning home, or an increased search for Italian suppliers to keep production stable. All with considerable impacts on the sustainability of costs and the increase in prices applied to the end customer.

Uncertainty, volatility, re-localisation: the mix in these dynamics cannot but lead to a change in the financial needs of SMEs. Not just in import terms, but also in the types of instrument that can guarantee the company greater stability and business sustainability. To follow up on the search for new supply channels and consolidate, even grow, in positioning on its reference market, the Supply Chain Finance instruments are an important strategic lever for the company when conducting its choices on international markets.

In this therefore being flanked by the right financial partner is crucial; to guarantee a prompt response, ongoing, flexible support when dealing with price volatility, complete credit services and strong guarantees, sufficient for customer needs. All with the company being able to access them using slim, customer-oriented , digital instruments, a basic requirement for a credit Institute that wants to optimise and simplify flows, providing an effective benefit as business partner.

Banca Ifis has always worked with this in mind; first of all flanking chain companies daily to sustain their liquidity needs and, in recent years, dedicating strong digitisation investments to this world. Thus resulting in several projects including the Ifis4business platform, a fundamental ally to improve the daily operations of all factoring transferors and debtors.

 

by
Luca Bigatti
Supply Chain Finance Manager
With a Degree in Administration Finance and Control from Bocconi University, I started my career in consultancy for the Financial Services sector in KPMG. In Banca Ifis since 2014, I have been working in Strategic Planning and Business projects, then taking on the role as Supply Chain Finance Manager for the Domestic and International markets.

 

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