The Asset Based Finance Association's (ABFA) annual report for 2011 has indicated how invoice finance is continuing to prove a vital source of external funding for UK enterprises. Almost £250 billion worth of cash was funded to businesses across the UK throughout 2011, a rise of 7.6% on 2010. Invoice discounting facilities continued to prove the most popular in terms of client numbers, with 17,695 companies benefitting from more than £200 billion in advances, an increase on 14% from last year. 18,204 businesses had a factoring facility and accessed more than £18 billion worth of cash in the year, an increase of 3% on last year. More than 41,000 businesses now use an invoice finance facility in the UK to help boost their cashflow, as companies from a wide range of sectors, but particularly manufacturing, distribution and services, are looking to invoice finance as an external funding source. Skipton Business Finance is pleased to see the continuing popularity of invoice finance, despite the continued difficulties of the current economic climate, and has funds to lend to companies in need of a flexible external finance facility.