Invoice factoring on Blockchain


Supplier payment, and specifically shipping payment, terms in the transportation industry are known to be extremely long, and most transportation carriers cannot afford to wait 30–180 days to get paid. Factoring the invoice is when a carrier factors its invoices – it pledges the collection rights in its accounts receivable to the bank and, in exchange, the bank advances cash in about 10 business days.

By industry averages, this cost to carriers is 3% of every receivable — often escalating up to a 25% annualized interest rate. The bank then waits the 30–180 days and collects directly from the freight shipper. If inflation is thought of as a silent tax, invoice factoring is a second layer of silent taxes on everything we buy.

More than 1 million U.S. trucking companies are factoring 100% of their invoices, and 50% of third-party logistics companies are too. Due to inflation, larger transportation companies are also losing 3% or more of their invoice values when waiting over 60 days to get paid by shippers. These costs create higher freight rates, and the excesses ultimately trickle down to every household and consumer.

How does it work?

Factoring companies and banks can act as the equivalent of pay-day lenders, buying the truckers’ invoices and giving them access to their pay sooner. However, the arrangement results in truckers essentially selling their invoices at a discount.

Due to a lack of options, truckers are subject to interest rates on their invoices that can get as high as 30%, according to Watkins. Though it gets truckers paid quicker, they can still be left waiting over a long time to get out of the factoring contract.

“It’s one of those deals that is easy to get into but very hard to get out of,” said Watkins. “One of the first things that a factoring company will do to a motor carrier they sign with is put a lien on their accounts receivables.”

Therefore, no other company can legally pay that motor carrier directly without paying the factoring company. So truckers still may need to wait for the long invoice terms to conclude before they can receive money from another factoring company or a customer.

The payment terms are often laid out in the contract agreed by the trucker, but they have not been getting shorter, and there is no law nor regulation on how soon a broker has to pay a motor carrier, Watkins added.

TruckCoinSwap’s proposed solution 

The TCS proposed solution, to the truck payment problem, is a decentralized and blockchain-based marketplace where truckers can sell invoices and turn them into funds within two days.

On TruckCoinSwap’s exchange, which is accessed through a phone app, the collection rights on an unpaid trucker’s invoice are exchanged for its newly created TCS token based on the polygon blockchain. TCS is currently listed on three exchanges and available in 80 countries, according to the company.

The amount of the TCS token that the trucker would receive would equal the expected cash value of the invoice payment. The trucking company could then immediately sell its TCS on one of TruckCoinSwap’s partner exchanges to turn it into US dollars.

For example, if the invoice value was $10,000 and was settled, or “factored,” with a bank or intermediary, the trucker would have paid the industry standard 3%–4% fee, totaling $300–$400 to get the cash in about 10 business days. Many banks and factoring companies also offer “quick pay” products that provide funds in just three to five business days for another 1%–2% fee. Had the trucker needed its cash quickly, the fees would have totaled $400–$600. On that same $10,000 invoice, the trucker can now settle with TruckCoinSwap using TCS Token in about three business days — for the low total cost of only $10.10

Benefits & Outcomes
  • Fast payment of invoices for truckers and transportation companies
  • Low fees for the service vs current models (saving up to 10% of invoice value)
  • Blockchain verified transaction – giving immutability, trust and speed
  • TCS coins can be swapped and transacted with Stablecoins
  • The stablecoins can be off ramped to the truckers Fiat currency bank account
Further Info

Will drivers adopt it?

“While Ziegler acknowledged there could be some apprehension among drivers to trust a blockchain and token system for payment, adviser Lupien described how using drivers paperwork, or in this case, their digital assets, is not the same as trading cryptocurrency.

“The beauty of what TCS is doing is using digital assets as a vehicle for solving the payment problem. For the user of the product, it doesn’t matter what the back end is. Essentially a driver is going to take a picture of their manifest using their phone and then using a debit card, get nearly instant access to their liquidity at much lower costs. It’s not like they are trading in bitcoin or doing cryptocurrency in that regard. Blockchain is simply the back-end vehicle that allows TCS to provide that liquidity at a lower cost,” said Lupien.

Users could also be concerned about volatility of these digital assets and cryptocurrencies in general, although Philip Schlump, TCS’ chief customer officer and lead developer, explained the security of the model.

“Carriers and 3PLs need to get to liquidity, so they need to sell TCS. Drivers need to fill up their rigs and get to their next load. They’re not investing in crypto, so we’ve built the tokenomics model around that need,” said Schlump. “If TCS needs to buy the token on the other side of an exchange transaction, it will. In fact, TCS will become the single largest buyer.””


The first transaction completed at the end of 2022

Researched by Antony January 2023

© Antony Welfare 2024