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As inflation has increased and suppliers are under greater pressure, Flintshire County Council wanted to support its local small and micro suppliers, to boost cash flow and to support growth and job creation within the regional economy.
Flintshire County Council worked with Oxygen Finance to implement FreePay, a scheme to accelerate the payment of invoices to local businesses, supporting them with their cash flow and boosting growth. Businesses that are eligible are automatically enrolled into the FreePay programme, helping the council to pay suppliers early, without charge.
Through FreePay more than 10,000 invoices have been paid early by the council, with more than 330 suppliers now registered to the programme. Payments are being made in less than half of the time that is contracted, averaging seven days.
“We are proud to be able to offer early payment to our small and micro suppliers through this scheme. As the cost-of-living crisis puts more pressure on small businesses and their employees, FreePay will continue to accelerate cash to the businesses that need it most.”
Councillor Paul Johnson, Flintshire’s Cabinet Member for Finance
It is estimated that 20% of small businesses have encountered cash flow issues thanks to late payments. Businesses, large and small, can benefit from early payment and the positive impact it has on the growth and development of business.
Working with Oxygen Finance, Flintshire County Council also offer a FastTrack programme offering early payment to larger suppliers. This scheme applies a small, pre-agreed rebate that is based on how quickly the payment is accelerated. This provides the council more funding that can be reinvested into the delivery of crucial local services.
Speaking about the FastTrack programme, Councillor Johnson added:
“The FastTrack programme offers significant benefits to our suppliers with firms receiving payments efficiently and in much shorter timescales than the agreed terms. We encourage suppliers to sign up so that they too can get access to earlier payment and the advantages this brings.”
Using both FreePay and the FastTrack scheme, Flintshire County Council has supported their supplier base, fostering improved relationships, and supporting the community through the additional funding received and the positive impact of early payment within the local economy.
Financial technology delivering social value. Oxygen specialise in early payment, the procurement process and public sector insight.