Author: Karyn Winrich April 28th 2024

Running a small business requires not only hard work but also financial management. There are several strategies and tools that small business owners can utilize to stay on top of their finances and ensure the long-term success of their businesses. Today, Capital Growth Network invites you to read on to learn our top tips for managing your finances as a small business owner.


Establish a Financial Plan and Regularly Review It


The most important thing you can do as a small business owner is set a budget and review it regularly. A budget will help you plan for the future of your business by allowing you to allocate funds accordingly. Additionally, it will help keep track of where money is being spent, so that you can make adjustments, if necessary.



Have Clear Objectives for Business Expansion


It’s important to create specific goals for the growth of your small business. Having detailed objectives will provide an attainable roadmap for where you want your business to be in the next few months or years. Without proper planning, businesses can become stagnant or even fail due to a lack of direction or ambition.


Digitize Your Records


In today’s digital age, there’s no reason to be buried neck-deep in paperwork. By digitizing your records, you can facilitate better organization and avoid the stress of misplaced documents. Try saving your files as PDFs to make them easier to store and share, as well. You can also use free online tools to help you change file formats if necessary.


Invest in an Accountant or a Powerful Accounting System


Accounting software can take the hassle out of bookkeeping. They can help keep track of financial transactions, invoices, taxes, and payroll conveniently. Investing in accounting software will save you time and energy, as well as ensure that your taxes are accurately filed at the end of the fiscal year. Accountants however, are invaluable tools for ensuring accuracy as sometimes, even the best software solutions do not offer enough tailored advice. An experienced accountant should have a better understanding of individual needs and can ensure all legal requirements are met throughout the process. Working with an accounting professional saves time and effort while avoiding costly mistakes or potential penalties associated with non-compliance.


Upgrade to POS Inventory Management


Switching to a POS platform, offers much more than just streamlined payment processing. Businesses can easily manage inventory levels and control costs associated with ordering new supplies or goods. Detailed reports and analytics allow for monitoring sales performance, providing insight into what works best in terms of sales volume, stock levels, cost savings, profits, etc. Having access to this information makes running a successful small business easier.


Implement Financial Strategies


The task of managing finances can be intimidating for many individuals, particularly for those who are self-employed. However, there are various tools and resources available that can simplify this process and help businesses stay organized. By investing in such solutions and collaborating with accounting professionals, individuals can feel confident that they are taking the necessary steps toward long-term success. Utilizing these tools can provide peace of mind and enable individuals to focus on growing their businesses without the added stress of financial management.

Accounting AccountingAdvice Banking Cash FinancialAdvice money MoneyAdvice


Have you noticed the gradual yet subtle changes to the banking system? The:

  • increase in branch closures.
  • reduction in staff and counter services.
  • Introduction of digital currencies.
  • introduction of mobile phone banking.


Do any of the above cause you concern, or do you perceive these changes as beneficial innovation and necessary for advancements in efficiency? Let us examine the implications.


Cash may soon symbolise the only freedom left available to us. We live in a society that openly tracks and monitors our every move and to some extent, our thoughts using algorithms based on our online activity. From the minute you leave your home, you are monitored by CCTV to and from your destination. When you tap in and out with an oyster card, your entire journey is mapped out. When you make purchases using a credit or debit card, your every purchase is logged.


Cash offers some sense of privacy, whether it’s making purchases or sojourning for some personal time. There are numerous people in our society who still prefer cash transactions, what will be the agenda for them? Will they be de-facto forced into to the digital world of finance by removing cash despite their protestations? Where’s the democracy in that? Will there be a “Don’t get left behind” shaming campaign starring celebrities assuring us that it’s ok with nothing to be afraid of? Where’s the sincerity in that? It seems that democracy is either slowly being eroded, or it picks and chooses when and what to apply itself to.


There was a time when a mobile phone was just another device used for making and receiving calls and text however, it has in recent decades become an irreplaceable and often addictive appendage rather than an accessory. So much so, that you are required to posses a mobile phone for most if not all online bank, crypto and credit card accounts for the purposes of login and ID authentication. In some cases, without a mobile phone, you’ll have no access to your online accounts and with the reduction in high street branches and counter services, access to your money may become impossible [without a mobile phone].


If the new world order is to be globally connected by the 5G network, then it makes sense to assume that in time, some or maybe all the governing institutions (Finance, Politics, Religion and Education) may become universal i.e. a global digital currency. As asked earlier, what will become of the people who still want cash and thus reject this ever-growing digital world? The age old three-step modus operandi:


  1. Discredit


  1. Demonize


  1. Destroy


Benefits of a cashless society


Limitations of a cashless society


Fraud prevention


An enslaved society
Increased efficiency in transactions


Arbitrary freezing of identity.


Zero risk of losing cash in public Death of cash only businesses.


For anything to be appealing, there must be some aspect of benefit to make it worthwhile (e.g. the tree of good and evil had good in it). So of course, innovations in Fintech are beneficial to us but no system is perfect.


Can you think of anymore?


A Few Quotes

“I used my debit card in a well-known supermarket to buy groceries. A few weeks later, I received vouchers from the supermarket. When I looked at the vouchers, they were for all the items I had bought using my card. Some people might think that’s great, not me. It felt intrusive and I felt as though I was being monitored. It made me paranoid. I went back to using cash.” Mike, London.


“The news that paper rail tickets could be scrapped [Metro, Mon] made me angry. We are supposed to live in a democracy, but many companies and the government are forcing us into having to buy smartphones to buy tickets and access information. I neither want nor can afford to buy a smartphone and pay for its’s running costs. My phone fits easily into a pocket and is great for calls and texts. Tickets and banking online are useless if you have no charge or are somewhere with no reception. Give me paper tickets and a person to talk to face-to face to ensure we get the best service, any day. Jane, Hastings.(Metro ed. 2023)


“Why are we being blindly led to a cashless society? As far as I can see, it’s another nail in democracy’s coffin. Why is an important decision as this not put to the people’s vote? It would be nice to hear the views of other people. M Keevil, by email.(Metro ed. 2023)




  1. Metro (ed.) (2023) ‘Do we want a cashless society?’, Metro, 8 February, pp. 13–13.

Ecopreneurship: Tips for Making Your Business More Sustainable

By Karyn Winrich 22nd September 2022


Today, consumers expect a promise of sustainability from businesses, and they want to see action to show a commitment to being eco-friendly. As an entrepreneur, you have the opportunity to build a green business from the ground up. Start by considering these tips.


Making Your Supplies More Sustainable

If your business produces a tangible product, you’ll need materials to create and ship it. One way you can be visibly environmentally conscious is to offer sustainable packaging. Some common examples include biodegradable materials, such as packing peanuts and recycled paper and cardboard. You can even try cornstarch packaging. If you’re selling a product with fabric, opt for an organic version. Additionally, you should commit to using the minimum amount of packaging necessary. Large retail stores are often criticized for their overuse of packing materials.


Monitoring Energy Usage

Part of reducing your carbon footprint is recognizing your energy usage issues. You can monitor the amount of energy your company uses with a smart meter. Light, heating, and cooling make up the vast majority of energy usage in an office building. You can find ways to reduce that usage by taking advantage of natural light and opening the windows on days with pleasant weather. Simply turning off a light when you leave the room can make a difference.


Reducing Your Waste

Reducing waste is the easiest way you can be more sustainable. No business can completely reduce all waste. However, you can be paper-free as much as possible and make an effort to recycle. Provide recycling bins in your office and train staff to recycle effectively. You can even enlist a company to pick up your recycling for you.


Seeking Funding for Sustainability

Sustainable materials are sometimes more costly, but starting a business can already be expensive. If you’re concerned about funding, search for capital specifically available to entrepreneurs starting a sustainable company. For example, the government offers grants to businesses practicing environmentally friendly commerce. African American-owned startups have access to funding from the Coalition to Back Black Businesses, the National Association for Self-Employed, and the Minority Business Development Agency.


Marketing Your Green Business

One significant advantage of going green in business is that you can use that as a marketing strategy. Consumers are becoming more conscious about their carbon footprints, and you can make them feel like they are contributing to a solution by shopping with your business. Research shows that consumers are looking for companies that better reflect their personal concerns about the growing issues with the environment. Your marketing strategy should be consumer-oriented, meaning you must look at the world from the consumer’s point of view.


Staying Organized for Productivity

Being eco-friendly can also help you create a more organized office space. For example, you can create an entirely paper-free office. Start by digitizing your files. Not only is it more environmentally friendly but it’s also more sensible. Convert files to PDF so you can download them to your iPhone and other devices. You save paper and have access to your files wherever you go. You also don’t have to worry about having access to Wi-Fi to see them.


With a strong sustainability policy and evidence of being actively eco-friendly, your business will make a great impression on customers. By staying organized and continuing your green education, you’ll see great success. Just remember to be flexible and listen to the experts.


Saving isn’t as hard as it seems. If you’re looking for some smart savings guidance, these money saving tips should help you start to build up a handy nest egg.

· Create a budget by adding up your monthly spend on essentials like rent, utility bills, food shopping and car costs, to see if you have any spare money that could be moved into a savings account

· Start saving with a basic savings account. Saving even a small amount will give you peace of mind and get you into the savings habit

· If you have more money available, consider a higher-interest account or invest in an ISA. If you already have an ISA, maximise your allowance for this year

· Start long-term savings as soon as you can. Speak to your employer about possible pension schemes to join

· If you get a windfall of money, think about putting a percentage of it into your savings.


Saving money doesn’t have to be a chore. There are some easy ways you can get into the habit of saving money on a regular basis.

With a standing order, you tell your bank to pay money from your chosen account to another account at regular intervals – for example, once a month. If you’ve taken the time to work out how much you can save each month, make sure the money leaves your current account straight after you get paid. This way, there’s no temptation to spend the money you plan to save.

Some banks now offer you the ability to round up the amount you spend on your debit card to the nearest pound and transfer the difference into your eligible savings account. This is a painless way to start adding to a savings account


· Are you using all your minutes on your current mobile phone deal? If not, see when your contract expires and get ready to switch to a cheaper one.

· And what about utility bills? Could you pay less for electricity and gas? What about home or car insurance? Some financial comparison websites have tools that let you work out if you could find a cheaper deal. Less spent on bills, leaves more to save.

· Some companies offer discounted rates when you pay by direct debit.

· Many companies (e.g. mobile phone companies, broadband providers, etc) offer short-term bonuses or incentives. Just make sure you know when these run out so you can check you’re getting the best deal.


Wangiri call scams are calls from international numbers you don’t recognise and it’s a scam that could leave you seriously out of pocket.

The word ‘Wangiri’ is Japanese and means ‘one ring and drop’. It’s basically what’s known in the UK, as a ‘drop call’. Calls usually cut off just as the phone rings, leaving a missed call notification from an unfamiliar number with the intention of playing on your curiosity. If you do happen to take the bait, you’ll be routed to an expensive, premium rate service.

Phone companies have taken the initiative to invest in intelligence systems to proactively screen incoming calls for fraudulent numbers and are automatically blocking numbers known to be used for fraud.

If you get an unexpected call from an unknown, international or unusual number, here are some simple steps that you can take to protect yourself from Wangiri fraud:

1. Don’t answer any unexpected calls from unknown, international or unusual numbers.


3. Contact your service provider with the number you’re receiving nuisance calls from.

If you’d like to know more about mobile phone fraud, visit Action Fraud, the UK’s national fraud and cybercrime reporting centre.


google-site-verification: googlea2b6b5c884e38c84.html


Author: John De’Reveal

In an age of ever-increasing technological innovation, I find myself looking back in time and remembering how the future was depicted in the past. Although the world as we “see it” in 2019 didn’t quite turn out to be a 100% match to its 1985 futuristic depictions, I can’t help but notice the similarities. It’s as though the future was being planned ahead

Growing up in the 70’s/80’s, I remember watching cartoons such as the Jetsons. This show was produced in the 1960’s and then again in the 80’s and depicted what life would be like in the future where robots would be the norm and everyday appliances and infrastructure would be automated. Even a meal would be in the form of a pill.

Also, movies like Demolition Man (credit system), Blade Runner (video calling), The Terminator (Robots & Drones), Back to the Future 2 (Google Glass) and more all exhibited signs of the world as we know it today. Is this just a coincidence or was this great planning?

With that being said/asked, it seems ever more likely that digital currency was always going to happen and did not just come about by individual design. So, I wonder, what’s the next step? Well, during a conversation I recently had with a close friend, he mentioned that his customers are increasingly requesting that he invest in a card payment device as credit/debit cards have become the more common form of payment for them. He like myself prefer the option of the limited freedom that comes with cash so this is what I think will happen:

1. Cash will eventually no longer be legal tender. Credit/Debit cards and smart phones will remain the alternative and then the only way to buy and or sell goods and services

2. Convenience and efficiency will demand that card payments be made obsolete and that all financial data be centralised and accessible via smart/android phone through apps

3. Make it impossible to authenticate identification without the use of an app. Key cards will be obsolete

4. Make the use of log in data obsolete by introducing the already existing RFID technology by way of a microchip that is etched just under the skin on your hand. This will be for the simplicity of buying and selling, tracking and authentication to combat cyber crime

5. Centralise all personal information (medical history, financial data, access to work areas etc.) on the RFID chip

6. Make it mandatory to scan the RFID chip to access any services. Without it, life will become increasingly complicated.

The RFID microchip is already in its testing phase and via the smart/android phone, it is in its infancy. The thought of having a microchip in my hand leaves a mark that I don’t feel appeals to me despite the benefits however, not having the microchip may make life in the future rather unpleasant.

Here’s something to ponder. One day in the future it will be make your mind up time to the question I ask today…




As we move further into the re-emergence of technology, we must question whether these advances and innovations are in the best interests of humankind or are we being secretly and slowly herded into economic captivity.

It is common knowledge that our personal data and online activity is collected, analysed and used to “know us better” as individuals via AI (Artificial Intelligence). This way, advertisements are tailored to your everyday interests and among a host of other features, your mobile can predict your speech/typing patterns and styles.
Technology has become an addiction with people increasingly unwilling to forego their mobile phones. It has become our Proof of Identification, TV, Credit/Debit card, PC, Diary, supermarket, Personal Assistant & Best friend. Technology has replaced interaction are we are all in some part willingly becoming cyborgs in a system that will soon be solely based on technology. Cash will be phased out and payments will become digital. In a digital world, tax-payer power becomes obsolete because the man/woman pushing the buttons is god. If one push of a button can bankrupt you, what freedom will you have?

If there were for example a sudden rise in bank and credit card fraud with criminals becoming more and more sophisticated in their approach, or targeted advertising displaying the inconvenience of having to carry around a credit or debit card, how many people do you think would willingly sign up for an implant that offers them 100% security. No more clutter or bother, just swipe

Imagine if money laundering were linked to terrorism, this would cultivate the perfect climate for a cashless world as fear is almost always followed by legislation

Christianity has long held the belief that according to The Book of Revelation in the King James Bible, there will be a mark introduced to human kind by a beast system (some form of government). A large section of Christians believe that the RFID microchip implant is this very mark of the beast. For further insight on this subject, please click here

Please feel free to add to this list in the comments section

Increased transaction speeds
Increased security
Open banking
Future value attached data: Your personal data should come at cost to businesses who make use of it
AI powered digital agent

Decreased personal interaction
Innovations in fraud & negative religious implications
Shared personal Information
Currently exploiting peoples’ data FREE of charge. This should NOT be the case
“You” are being stored on a database somewhere possibly indefinitely

FRAUD WATCH – Grab Finance/Seek Finance


Cognor international Finance PLC trading as Grab Finance
Company number: 08747323
Alleged address: 5th Floor, 6 St. Andrew Street, London, EC4A 3AE

This fraudulent firm is ironic as in their name ‘Grab Finance’ is exactly what they do. They grab the finances of unsuspecting start up businesses in need of funding.

Finding a grant can be tedious however, there is funding out there if you know where to look. Fraudsters like Cognor International Finance PLC have taken advantage of this market by offering FREE grants to businesses. The initial application process seems formal enough with:

1. An online form to fill in your basic details for a call back
This is relatively normal

2. A call back from a representative with a brief telephone interview
This is the fishing for information stage to see if you’re worth defrauding. The targets here are businesses that can afford to contribute a percentage of the full amount awarded, usually up to 30%.

E.g. if you’d be awarded a grant of £12,000.00, Grab Finance will supposedly contribute an initial £8,400.00 leaving £3,600.00 as your contribution.

3. A decision – Alarm bells start ringing.
If you applied for full funding without a contribution, at this point your application will be unsuccessful however, if you applied for the part funding option with a contribution, you will be overjoyed to know that your application has been approved for the full amount. At this point, most firms will be duped by the initial elation of being approved for funding and the promise of additional cashflow that basic due diligence is forfeit.

  • Did they request a business plan to access the nature and viability of your business?
  • Were you invited anywhere to meet regularly with a liaison to prepare you for panel?
  • When you call Grab Finance, is there ever any senior members or staff available to answer any of your queries or concerns?

4. Receipt of application pack
This is packaged in such a way as to… Well, see for yourself (attached page 3 of 5 page acceptance form. Full form is shown on our facebook and Google+ pages)

5. Set up online business pre-paid Mastercard account
You will be given a link to a fraudulent Mastercard website with an unofficial contact number to verify it. Here, you will need to set up an account (requesting your passport, date of birth, company name and your address with proof) to receive a special PIN which you must send to Grab Finance. Once they’ve received your PIN, they’ll upload the £8,400.00 onto the pre-paid Mastercard and as soon as you contribute your £3,600.00, they’ll… Grab Your Finance.

  • Call Mastercard’s official contact telephone number which you can find on the official Mastercard website. Get confirmation from a named representative
  • Mastercard will give you information that fraudsters cannot verify as in, the first 6 digits on the card and to confirm the card issuer for verification
  • Have you received your pre-paid business credit card? Or will you receive it only once your contribution has been uploaded? Does it even exist. Call Mastercard directly

If you have fallen victim to these fraudsters, please take the necessary steps to protect yourself by contacting:
1. Action Fraud
2. Your Banks / Building societies
3. Cifas (To avoid accounts being opened in your name)
4. Companies House (To avoid companies being opened in your name)


Want to take control of your credit score? Here’s everything you need to know about the factors that count. Credit scores are a complicated business. No-one has a universal credit score. This means there’s no rulebook to tell you how many credit points are lost and won with everything you do financially. Instead, we’re going to talk about the factors that may affect how lenders view you, and how these, in turn, impact your credit score.


If you have a CCJ (County Court Judgement) against you, an IVA (Individual Voluntary Arrangement) or bankruptcy, this information is on the public record and becomes part of your credit report.

If lenders see any of these three items marked on your report, it will have a negative impact on your credit score and it’s likely lenders will be less willing to lend to you. This is because your record shows you’ve gone back on some form of financial agreement in the past.

If you do have one of these on your record, make sure you comply with any rules or restrictions you are given. If you ignore what is asked of you, it can have more serious and permanent consequences on your credit score. Using a credit builder credit card very carefully will help you rebuild your credit score.


It’s no surprise to learn that banks and lenders like to know that the people they lend to are reliable and stable – and therefore can be trusted to repay any debts.

One way they determine stability is to look at how long you’ve lived at your address and if you are on the electoral roll. If you’ve been living in one place for a long time, this will be better for your credit score than if you are frequently moving between properties.

In addition to this, being on the electoral roll provides the lender with assurance not only that you are who you say you are, but that you’re settled at your current address (another sign of stability).


Just like with your address, banks and lenders like to see signs of stability in the age of your credit accounts. So, they like to see that at least one of your credit accounts has been held for several years. Just like your address, this not only proves who you are, but shows you’ve been trusted by another lender over a long period of time. It’s likely to have a positive impact on your credit score if you have an older credit account on there. If your credit accounts are all mostly new this could lower your credit score.


Every time you make an application for credit, a credit application search (or a ‘hard’ search) will be carried out on your credit report and a mark will be left on your file.

Making an occasional application for credit won’t make much of a difference to your credit score. However, if you make several applications in a short space of time, or if you’re rejected for credit, it’s likely to have a negative impact on your score.

If you want to limit the number of application searches (‘hard’ searches) on your report, you can check your eligibility for a credit product using quotation searches (‘soft’ searches) before you apply. This is better for your credit score, as only you can see the quotation searches on your report (they’re invisible to lenders). You can see your eligibility for products on the Clear Score Offers page of your account.

TIP: Don’t panic if your credit score dips when you’ve applied for a new credit card. If you start using your new product responsibly then your credit score should go back up relatively quickly.


If you miss a payment or pay late on a debt, this will be marked on your credit report and it’s likely to have a negative effect on your credit score.

If you miss several payments your lender may place your account into ‘default’. Every lender will have different rules for how many payments you’re allowed to miss before you default. Some will allow you to miss up to 6 payments but for some lenders you may only be able to miss 2 payments before you are declared in default.

Defaulting on a debt carries a much heavier penalty on your credit score than missing a payment. Missing and default payments will be marked on your credit report and will stay there for 6 years (the maximum time your credit information is held for). Remember, it’s never too late to pay back a debt. It will always look better on your
credit report to pay down a defaulted account – even if the payment is late and it isn’t for the full amount. It will demonstrate to lenders that you’ve tried to make up for the defaulted payment, and this is always preferable to never paying a debt back at all.


Your credit utilisation will have an impact on your credit score. For example, if you use too much of your total available credit or too much of a single line of credit, it could damage your score.

Lenders may also consider this when they’re assessing your creditworthiness and ability to pay back credit. Equifax have created the following traffic light system as a guide to show how credit utilisation might impact your credit score:-

  • If you use less than 50% of your total credit limit, it shouldn’t have a negative impact on your credit score (‘green flag’)
  • If you use between 50% – 75% of your total credit limit, this will show up as an ‘amber flag’ on your credit report, meaning it may have an effect on your credit score
  • If you are using more than 75% of your total credit limit, this will be a ‘red flag’ on your credit report, and it’s likely to have a negative effect on your credit score.

This means, ideally, you should think about carefully managing your credit utilisation. So for example, if your total limit is £1000, you might not want to use more than £500. If you have multiple cards or accounts, you might want to share out the amount you’re borrowing across the cards, rather than maxing out one card (but only if this makes financial sense).


If you have one credit card with a relatively high credit limit, this may have a positive effect on your credit score as it shows you’re trusted with this level of credit.


Mistakes on credit reports can and do happen, and these can have a negative effect on your credit report. Some of the most common errors include incorrect names and addresses, but other details such as whether you’re on the electoral roll, your debt levels and account status can have errors as well.

If your name or address have errors or if you have used different names/addresses for different accounts some of your accounts may not appear on your credit report. This may mean you lose out on any positive effects that these accounts may have on your credit score. Make sure you look at the ‘accounts’ section of your credit report to check all of your accounts are there and there’s nothing you don’t recognise.
If you want a cheat sheet of things to check on your credit report, you can use our article here.

If you don’t have any active credit accounts – i.e. ones that you’re currently using – this may have a negative impact on your credit score. The reason for this is that lenders have no current information about your ability to borrow money and repay it reliably, and therefore you may be seen to be a greater credit risk. If you have no credit history you may struggle to be approved for credit in the first place.

10. Other factors relating to your credit limit may also affect your credit score. For example,

  • Making sure your current Telecoms balance is kept low
  • Staying within your credit card limit each year