Fast-growing firm opts for flexible finance option to invest in latest CAD technology.
Founded as a start-up business by Army Reserve Matthew Cunliffe in 2008, YourCad Ltd provides 2D and 3D computer-aided design (CAD) services to SMEs ranging from basic layout to building information modelings (BIM). In 2015 the company relocated to larger offices situated in Earby, a rural town on the Lancashire and Yorkshire border to provide multiple services across a wide range of industries.
As a relatively small business, YourCad’s location allows it to offer highly competitive services due to not having to pay huge overheads that larger businesses face when running city centre premises.
YourCad is continually seeking to keep up with modern design trends to remain ahead of its rivals. The company has recently doubled its growth and hired additional staff which required the purchase of new software licences.
YourCad’s solution of choice is Building Design Suite – a portfolio of interoperable 3D building design and documentation software from global leading provider, Autodesk. In 2016 Autodesk announced it was to cease selling standalone perpetual licences of its desktop software as part of a worldwide strategy to transition to a subscription-based pricing model.
Although Autodesk’s decision to make desktop subscriptions available through monthly, quarterly as well as annual plans and multi-year agreements would make it easier for customers to access the latest versions of its technology, the policy still had financial implications for YourCad.
Matthew Cunliffe, Director and BIM Consultant at YourCad Ltd, explains, “One of the challenges for an expanding business like ours is how to continually finance investment in new software licences and associated maintenance fees while budgeting for the additional outlay that is associated with recruiting more staff.
“Autodesk’s evolving strategy meant that we needed to carefully evaluate the impact this could have on our working capital and the future plans of the business.”
Matthew consulted IT software reseller and integrator Cadassist for advice. As a Gold Autodesk partner specialising in 3D design across all key industry sectors and rated as the leading Autodesk UK training centre six times in the previous eight years, Cadassist was ideally placed to outline YourCad’s options having supported the company since its formation in 2008.
Having understood Matthew’s ambitions, Cadassist explained how these plans could be achieved against the backdrop of changes to Autodesk’s licensing model.
Jon Hind, Director at Cadassist Ltd, says, “We devised a solution that combined both perpetual licences and Autodesk’s new subscription rental model which was ideally suited to YourCad’s needs as a small business managing multiple short-term projects. Although Matthew was very happy with our proposal it meant that YourCad’s initial upfront investment was higher than he had previously budgeted for.”
Cadassist suggested approaching Syscap, a specialist IT finance provider and the name behind the Autodesk Finance programme in the UK who had been known to them for several years and was experienced in providing tailored commercial solutions to businesses of all sizes.
“We highly recommended Syscap because we have known them to be extremely responsive and reliable over many years. As well as being a dedicated provider of IT finance solutions, Syscap’s position as the provider of choice to Autodesk ensured YourCad could take advantage of a 0% finance incentive for a limited period to smooth the transition from perpetual to the subscription-based solutions it needed.”
The results and benefits
Syscap provided an easy way for YourCad to pay for Autodesk’s software over a three-year period and quickly realise the company’s return on investment by spreading the cost of upgrades, renewals and additional new licences in a single, monthly financial package.
The flexible, payment over time agreement covers the cost of purchasing Autodesk’s Building Design solutions and associated maintenance fees in one affordable package instead of YourCad having to pay a significant lump sum upfront and dip into vital cash reserves. As Syscap’s bespoke finance plan is tailored to YourCad’s requirements, the company can upgrade its technology should it need to in order to leverage new design innovations and flourish in the future.
Matthew comments, “We were happy to rely on Cadassist’s sound advice and have been delighted with the prompt and proactive service we have received from Syscap. Moving to an affordable monthly finance plan to spread the cost of our software investment over three years has given us piece of mind and removed a massive weight off our shoulders.
“We also have the flexibility and agility of being able to access the IT assets we need, as soon as we need them, without having to worry about the impact on our short-term cash flow which wasn’t possible before. Dealing with Syscap is simple and it took only two working days to agree our financial plan.”
Having ensured that the software platform on which YourCad’s business is based upon is now secured for the next three years, Matthew can now plan for the future in confidence.
He adds, “We are very proud of our roots and committed to supporting the local community. By choosing this solution we were able to free up cash to create several apprenticeship roles which give young people the opportunity to gain world-class BIM skills that are available on their doorsteps which will be the future of the design industry.
“Syscap will play an integral part in allowing us to continue to grow and access the cutting edge software we need so that we can punch well above our weight.”