?Crafty Creditpdf

The Strategic Use of Trade Credit                                    

Dr Salima Yassia

   Dr Rebecca Boden

Pr Cherif Guermat

Abstract

This paper explores the contribution that trade credit can and does make as a competitive device that can add value to companies when used strategically. By reference to the literature, we argue that trade credit is not merely a short-term collection issue, and that, used proactively, it can be a source of competitive advantage. We then develop an empirical model to test the relationship between trade credit and sales/profitability to determine whether, and the extent to which, trade credit constitutes a strategic tool. We find, inter alia, evidence that, when used strategically to enhance competitive advantage, firms have a discernible optimal level of trade credit. Despite data limitations, we conclude that our model demonstrates a viable methodology that could be applied usefully to an extended data set.