- What We Do
- Impact Capital
- Project Finance
- Renewable Energy
- Where We Work
How We Work
We work in three steps (“In 3″ — get it?), collaborating with client companies to:
1. Prepare – Identify, evaluate and describe project(s) and funding options.
2. Present investment proposal or pre-apply for project finance per investor’s preferred format.
3. Partner — assist with investor due diligence, obtain commitment letter or expression of interest, execute agreement(s).
See below for further information. A more detailed roadmap of process steps for obtaining a commercial loan is available upon request.
Funding Process Steps
PREPARATION: In step 1, before contacting us, you can assess your project’s readiness and receive feedback about your project’s opportunities for funding. Our assessment (Project Investment Readiness Assessment, or PIRA) helps clarify your chances for success via a “bankability score” and thorough explanation of what it means in practical terms.
Then, when you contact us for assistance, we can together assess what work is needed, who will do what, and more accurately estimate service fees and timeframes.
Both established companies and new ventures or project companies are welcome.
We may ask you to consider the need for additional project development, planning or polishing the package of due diligence materials as necessary to achieve favorable terms. To receive project financing without delays, also review responses to Frequently Asked Questions, Success Tips, or for work in an emerging market, consider using our 8-point, guide “Does my situation qualify (for US development finance)?”
Here are some of the points addressed in our 9-question PIRA assessment:
Does the project use proven technology? Capital for projects with little or no remaining technology risk — using “off-the-shelf” core products, services or technologies that are commercially proven — tend to receive the lower cost (better term) loans. For example, most solar/PV panels now carry a 30-year manufacturer’s warranty. If your core innovation is in the technology itself, consider venture finance, not project finance.
How to Securitize Loans: Risk management is an import value-add from using In3′s services.
- Contractual arrangements with suppliers or customers help minimize commercial risks (such as power purchase agreements for energy producers), but loan guarantees, corporate or personal, are often requested to further ensure that the lender gets repaid. Such guarantees or partial guarantees sometimes come from multilateral, development finance institutions, or “sponsors” (partners) that wish to see the company deliver developmental impacts in the form of good, private-sector job creation, cleaner water or air, healthier indoor cooking, or a myriad of other sustainability solutions.
- Existing or new capital assets can be pledged as part of a collateral package to help further secure the loan, through limited-recourse or no-recourse lending (unlike a real estate mortgage).
- Risk insurance can play a helpful role when working in host countries with unstable currencies, policies or government regimes.
Getting Started: To clarify the type, size, and scope of the project we use a one-page pre-qualification form. Send this completed document to us for a free consultation. We may ask you to use our readiness assessment tool (click here) as well. If you have questions, contact us; we are here to help.
Project Development follows pre-qualification screening. This step begins with discovery of the project’s status, including geographic placement, managers and sponsors, and overall financial situation:
- Who are the players and what is the scope of the project?
- Total budget, estimated costs and amount of finance?
- Ownership structure (host country and US ownership/involvement)?
- Assets organized and listed in one place?
- Is there a business plan or other prepared documentation?
Our Value-Add: We work with identified gaps that may influence your probability of success. We speak fluent “investor” — the language used by accredited individuals, investment funds, banks and non-bank finance institutions — to help you step into their shoes and gain mutual understanding and respect from the get-go. We’ve run numerous successful venture fundraising campaigns and originated loans for complex projects using these best practices and tools, making the process easier and more systematic.
Further, we can spot risk factors and other “out of bounds” conditions that can get in the way of investor support. Our objectivity and training gives project teams the opportunity to adjust presentations and plan proactively, making most projects investible and bankable without the risk of making the wrong impression or being turned down by a desirable source of capital.
How we work: Typical project development entails setting up one or more conferences and/or meetings with key personnel and/or government officials, sometimes restructuring (such as setting up a legal entity where the project is to be located, or through a joint venture with additional partners), or others strategic considerations as needed to secure capital.
PRESENTATION: Step 2 actions depend on the target investor(s), where some prefer to meet in person — a pitch session with deal screeners followed by one or more subsequent meetings with decision makers — while others prefer to use a more anonymous and formal, online application system.
What are the expectations of each investor, including
- the time they are willing to invest up front
- values and principles, sense of responsibility or mission, their true “hot buttons” and “sweet spots”
- appetite for risk
- financial ratios, such as debt-to-equity, debt service coverage, expectations for return, etc.
- appetite for detail — what facts must be presented first before other specifics will be heard?
- cultural or geographic considerations, such as what regions, countries, languages or currencies they prefer…
We facilitate and streamline this process to hit the mark and gain “traction” (investor interest), faster and easier than our competitors. We shave off at least 30% of the time it takes to attract investment at favorable terms.
PARTNERSHIP: In Step 3 we use information collected in steps 1 and 2 for the due diligence process, leading to procurement of capital investments, and advise or consult with the company principals as necessary to satisfy investor requirements, provide supplemental information (updated financial statements is the most common request), and when necessary, remove any remaining, perceived issues or risk factors.
Our track record shows we have learned how to navigate all these complexities to help you find and partner with investors that “get it.” It is essential that companies ONLY accept capital from investors with whom you share values and principles. A values mismatch can lead to unimaginable horror stories — investors driving your otherwise viable business into the ground. When we help companies source and screen investment capital, this is imperative, and part of how we do business.
Next Steps: Contact us to describe your situation and possible fit with our services, or jump in and use our project investment readiness assessment. If you’re not yet clear on project scope or goals, looking for additional partners or technical solutions, or want to assess market opportunities, competitive situation or your chances of receiving needed funds, see related services or contact us to discuss.