Financing is an essential element for establishing a new business, launching a new product or service, or expanding an existing business through internal growth or acquisition.  For example, cash is necessary in order for a company to continue operations while awaiting payment from customers and anticipated increases in sales; expand the volume of sales of existing products through increased advertising and promotion; develop or acquire new technical skills and assets, including acquisitions of other firms; enter specified new markets, including new facilities and recruitment of personnel; create new products that address a specified market need, including research and development; replace or upgrade aging or obsolete facilities or equipment; or comply with regulatory requirements, such as health standards or environmental laws.

It is likely that entrepreneurs and managers will, regardless of the size of their businesses, need to venture into the world of finance several times over the life cycle of the enterprise.  In that world they will encounter a wide range of participants, including banks, venture capitalists, investment bankers, government agencies, and business advisers, each of which will provide unique resources and experience.  In addition, they will be exposed to the legal requirements and institutions of their own domestic “financial systems”, which are the processes that have emerged for channeling funds from agents with surpluses of capital to agents with capital deficits, as well as the requirements and institutions of financial systems in other countries where they might be seeking capital and/or otherwise conducting business.

Capital suppliers have become increasingly innovative in devising financing techniques that are tailored to their needs and the goals and objectives of the businesses they serve.  However, before managers can begin the onerous process of securing funding, they must develop a careful plan for identifying the financial requirements of the business, the terms upon which the company hopes to secure the necessary funds, and the potential sources for the funding.  Of course, this assumes that management has already developed a “plan” for the business, product, concept or service, and has developed an outline of all of the requirements for successfully completing the plan (i.e., capital resources, human resources, other assets, marketing strategies and tactics).  In addition, in order to be effective in raising and managing their capital, managers must also develop and implement financing strategies supported by a wide variety of specific tools such as budgeting and forecasting and a strong internal finance department that is responsible for important core responsibilities and activities such as controllership, financial reporting, bank and investor relations, financial planning and analysis, treasury, tax reporting and compliance, internal controls, corporate development and participation in strategic initiatives such as mergers and acquisitions.


Business Transactions Solution on Thomson Reuters Westlaw contains a transaction-based practice system for the life cycle of a business entity. Each transaction structures itself around a module design, including transaction summary, memorandum analysis, master forms needed to execute the transaction, commentary analyzing every clause or provision of the form, drafting and review checklists, and specialty forms. The unlimited-use subscription provides regular updates, including new master forms, commentary, checklists, and specialty forms.

Legal Compliance Checkups: Business Clients.  The questionnaire format of this multivolume work shows how to elicit answers, make a diagnosis, and recommend an efficient, safe course of action for your business clients. Each chapter provides business guidance in specific business activities, including forming contracts; buying and selling a business; franchising; operating in the global marketplace; counseling on insurance, pension, securities, and product liability issues; borrowing money; contracting with the government; and resolving patent, copyright, and trademark-related problems and issues. Topics include business organization, estate planning, labor relations, real estate, securities, patents, computer software, advertising warranties, environmental law, and transportation and distribution.  Features include showing how to assess the “legal health” of your clients and suggestions on how to apply the right remedies to legal pitfalls in your clients’ activities.

Introduction to Finance

Training Materials: Counseling the Finance Function

Client Executive Summary: Financing Activities

Client Executive Summary: Offering Documents_

Securities Law Compliance

Securities Law Compliance Questionnaire

Venture Capital

Client Executive Summary: Sustainable Investing

Business Counselors Training Materials: Venture Capital Financing

Series A Preferred Stock Summary of Terms

Investors’ Rights Agreement

Commercial Debt Financing

Business Counselor’s Training Materials: Commercial Debt Financing

ADDITIONAL RESOURCES (POWERED BY SUSTAINABLE ENTREPRENEURSHIP PROJECT) The Sustainable Entrepreneurship Project engages in and promotes research, education and training activities relating to entrepreneurial ventures launched with the aspiration to create sustainable enterprises that achieve significant growth in scale and value creation through the development and commercialization of innovative products or services which form the basis for a successful international business.  The Project is also involved in collecting, analyzing and disseminating information about regional and national efforts around the world to support and expand sustainable entrepreneurship.  The Project has launched of its own portfolio of timely and practical information in the form of comprehensive libraries for sustainable entrepreneurs.  Libraries that are particularly relevant to finance include Finance.


West Legal Ed Center:  Click for list of all programs presented by the Institute on West Legal Ed Center. Programs relating to finance include several videos prepared for the Beyond the Bar training initiative and the following webinars (available on demand):

Business Counselor Institute on West Legal Ed Center

  • Counseling the Finance Function (05.2016)
  • Equity Financing (05.2016)
  • Debt Financing (05.2106)

Beyond the Bar Training Programs

  • Counseling the Finance Function
  • Offering Documents and Procedures
  • Equity Financing
  • Debt Financing
  • Venture Capital Financing
  • Commercial Debt Financing


Finance Articles from Business Counselor Institute

Finance Articles from Sustainable Entrepreneurship Project