Easol, the leading travel and experience commerce technology company, is announcing the launch of Easol Capital, a new financing solution tailor-made for festival organisers. Easol Capital will create a fair, flexible and transparent financing process that puts control back in the hands of festival organisers.
CHALLENGING THE EXISTING ADVANCE MODEL: Sourcing capital can be difficult for SMEs in the events and travel industries, as traditional finance providers are reluctant to loan following the impact of the pandemic. Difficulties obtaining capital are compounded by the current cost of living crisis and ongoing supply chain issues which mean having a reliable cash flow is more important than ever to secure the future of a festival. Until now, ticketing platforms have taken advantage of this gap by offering cash advances, but this comes at the expense of festival organisers. While the advances are nominally free, festival organisers have been tied into contracts with punitive terms around ticketing fees and long exclusivity, which limit organisers’ control over their own booking fees and data:
- Hefty fees: With traditional cash advances, festival and event organisers get charged up to 15% of their total turnover, plus other hidden costs.
- Short advance lengths: Advances are also typically only extended for a few weeks which doesn’t match the sales cycle of a festival.
- Profits withheld: Critically, 100% of sales are withheld until the loan is repaid, making cash flow extremely hard for festival organisers to manage.
BREAKING THE DEPENDENCY: Easol Capital is a tailor-made solution for festival organisers. It is designed with the festival sales cycle in mind, and puts organisers back in control of their cash flow. Easol have partnered with specialised lending companies to offer easy access to funding – here’s how it works:
- Fair lending terms: Easol Capital loans have no interest rate. Instead, organisers pay a fixed fee which is a percentage of the borrowed amount, typically 5-12%, so it’s always transparent what the loan costs and there are no hidden costs. To cover the borrowing cost, organisers can absorb the cost of the loan into their booking fees.
- Flexible repayment options: Repayments happen automatically as a fixed percentage of weekly sales, and adapt with revenue. So, if sales slow down, repayments do too. Most loans will be repaid within 4-8 months, and organisers can repay early or easily access more capital if their circumstances change.
- Quick and easy application process: Completing an application is free and only takes a few minutes. Organisers receive a decision within a day, and if approved can withdraw the loan immediately.
Currently, Easol Capital can provide finance from £1k-£1.5 million for festival organisers, with loans currently live in the UK and US. There are active plans to expand loan sizes and enter most European markets in the next few months.
Ben Simpson, Co-Founder and CEO of Easol, explained: “Festival and event organisers have been taken advantage of by traditional ticketing platforms and finance solutions for too long. We’re super proud to launch Easol Capital so that we can offer an alternative that works with organisers rather than against. More than ever, the pandemic has highlighted to us the importance of flexibility and adaptability, particularly given the unique nature of the festival sales cycle. With the simple and fixed fee structure of Easol Capital, there are no harsh interest rates and no nasty surprises. We believe there is a better way that works for everyone, and we’re excited to be leading this change in the industry!”
Benjamin Sasse, Co-Founder of Meadows in the Mountains, commented: “We secured funding from Easol Capital in its Beta phase and it has been a game changer for our festival. The whole application process was so easy, and we had the money in our bank within 24 hours. Our festival requires a huge amount of logistics and third party suppliers to help build the site on our Bulgarian mountain, and also to provide accommodation and food. Having access to capital during this time is crucial for us to be able to pay people on time and manage our cash flow across the different stages of the festival. Easol is the only provider on the market that gives the flexibility we need. They understand how the sales cycle works and have created a perfect solution.”
Easol will be outlining the benefits of Easol Capital at its Festivals Showcase event streamed globally on September 22, 2022.