The Force was with Sean Andrews in 2017. His company, Plox, a consumer tech gadget maker, rolled out its product that year, an officially-licensed Star Wars Levitating Death Star Bluetooth speaker. It was a big success. Suddenly, Plox was on a roll.
“We had a rapid start and needed a finance line to keep up with the demand of supplying national US retailers,” says Andrews.
What the Business Needed
Funding for Rapid Growth
Finding retailers to sell its hit product wasn’t hard. You can now find Plox’s “Death Star” speaker in stores like Best Buy, GameStop, Thinkgeek, Brookstone, and Amazon. But many retailers offered net-60 terms, which was bad news for Andrews. Waiting two months to get paid meant he had to scramble for other ways to pay for manufacturing and overhead expenses.
A Factor That Can Keep Up
He found a solution in invoice factoring which let him get cash advances on unpaid invoices. But traditional, paper-based factoring was slow and couldn’t adequately meet the business needs. He spent a lot of time manually filling out, scanning, and emailing paper forms whenever he submitted invoices for funding. That turned out to be a hassle for a fast-growing company like Plox that wanted to expand to 17 different SKUs.
How Bluevine Helped
Technology Helps Plox Run Lean
Andrews needed a technologically-advanced factoring company that could handle a large volume of invoices. Bluevine, he says, “became a better option as we were trying to scale.” With Bluevine, the factoring process was more streamlined: Andrews can log in anytime, select the invoices he wants for funding, and have money in his bank account within a day.
“A software system like Bluevine offers is critical to us. We run so lean that we need full transparency on the accounting side and quick approval of invoices.”
The Human Touch
Bluevine had real people to help out, Andrews says. This became clear to him during their first holiday season run when an invoice payment from one of Plox’s customers got delayed.
With traditional factoring companies, you may get penalized with hefty fees for a delayed invoice payment. But Andrews worked with his account manager at Bluevine to find a solution. “Rather than denting our cash flow,” he says, the Bluevine account manager “allowed us to continue factoring invoices from the good-paying customers, and chip away at the past-due amount with weekly payments.”
Eventually, the retailer paid the entire invoice amount and Andrews settled the account, and having Bluevine as a partner helped set Plox up for success during its first holiday run.
To learn more about Plox, you can check out their website here.
About Growing Business With Bluevine
Our clients grow with us. They use Bluevine financing to address everyday funding needs and to pursue opportunities to take their business to the next level. This series aims to highlight the stories of small and medium-sized businesses that have grown and continue to grow with Bluevine.