Companies to speed small biz contractor payments

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By Simon Brody

Saturday, July 12th, 2014

The White House has recruited some of the nation's largest companies - 26 in total - to commit to pay their small-business contractors faster modeling on the QuickPay initiative.

The private-sector program, called SupplierPay, mirrors Obama's QuickPay initiative that requires federal agencies to expedite payments to small-business contractors within 15 days. When businesses receive payment sooner, the White House says, they're more easily able to invest in new business opportunities, equipment and hiring.

Administration officials say that the president's program has resulted in more than $1 billion in cost savings for small businesses since it launched in 2011. They hope to replicate that success by asking companies such as Apple, Coca-Cola and AT&T to also commit to pay their contractors quickly.

Other companies participating in the program include Honda, Nissan, Toyota, CVS, IBM, Walgreens, Ericsson and FedEx.

Obama will also announce that he is expanding the federal QuickPay program to mandate that all federal contractors more quickly process payments to their subcontractors.

"For the larger companies, joining SupplierPay demonstrates a recognition that a healthy supply chain is good for business," the White House said in a statement.

"For the small business suppliers, benefiting from SupplierPay means having more capital to invest in new opportunities, new equipment, and new hiring."

According to the White House, small-business invoices typically go unpaid for an average of two months, and the number of "past due" payments has spiked in recent years. As a result, small businesses are facing cash deficiencies that may restrict growth.

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