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Online course

The Digital Economy: Finance for Business Growth

Learn how to develop a funding strategy for your business; explore different types of finance and learn when, and how, to use them

Free:

  • Access to the course for its duration + 14 days, regardless of when you join (this includes access to articles, videos, peer review steps, quizzes)
  • No access to course tests
  • No certificate

Upgraded:

  • Unlimited access to the course, for as long as it exists on FutureLearn (this includes access to articles, videos, peer review steps, quizzes)
  • Access to course tests
  • A Certificate of Achievement when you complete the course

Find out more

The Digital Economy: Finance for Business Growth

This course is part of the The Digital Economy program, which will enable you to thrive in the digital economy and earn 15 credits towards an MBA.

Why join the course?

Every business needs cash to grow and develop. Some businesses are able to find enough cash from their own operations to take advantage of growth opportunities. Others might need to use external sources of finance, like a bank loan. How does a business make robust decisions about borrowing?

Evaluate how to fund your business investment

Whether you are managing a micro business, a small- or medium-sized company, or a large corporation, this free online course will guide you through the finance options to help you evaluate what type of funding is suitable for your business investment and how to develop a funding strategy to make the right decision about the type of borrowing for your business. You will consider the role of traditional and alternative finance options and learn to use financial statements to asses the financial health of a business. You will also learn to use cash flow forecasts to help you make decisions about managing a business’ finances.

Throughout the course, there are interviews with business experts and business managers, who will show you how to make successful financing decisions.

Thrive in the digital economy

The Digital Economy: Finance For Business Growth is one of four courses from The Open University about the digital economy, designed to help experienced managers get to grips with today’s technology-enabled business environment.

The course has been developed by The Open University Business School – a pioneering institution that is triple accredited by AMBA, EQUIS and AACSB.

Holders of FutureLearn Certificates of Achievement for all four Digital Economy courses can earn 15 UK credits towards The Open University Business School’s flexible MBA by passing a linked Open University assessment module (requiring separate OU registration and fee).

What topics will you cover?

  • Assess the role of cash management in business and the relationship between cash management and business performance
  • Consider the benefits and drawbacks of different sources of finance
  • Understand the relevance of liquidity and solvency when managing a business
  • Evaluate the role of cash flow forecasting and assess future cash requirements
  • Understand the risks, benefits and drawbacks of different types of funding
  • Decide on a suitable type of funding and assess risk-return issues
  • Assess how and why alternative finance activities, such as crowdfunding, have evolved
  • Assess the benefits and risks of alternative finance for business borrowers
  • Evaluate the use of equity funding, both private and public equity issues
  • Assess the role of private equity, and the benefits offered by different types of private equity for funding business growth
  • Explore behavioural finance issues in investment decision-making

When would you like to start?

  • Date to be announced

What will you achieve?

  • Assess borrowing requirements and develop a strategy for your business finance needs
  • Assess the risks, benefits and drawbacks of different types of debt
  • Assess and critique finance available to your business, both traditional and newer sources, such as crowd funding
  • Evaluate funding opportunities for business growth and development
  • Apply and consider the role of traditional sources of finance, i.e. debt and equity, as well as alternative finance options, such as crowdfunding and peer-to-peer lending
  • Record and learn to use financial statements to assess the financial health of a business
  • Collect and learn to use a cash flow forecast to help you make decisions about managing business cash
  • Investigate and find out how you can develop a funding strategy and make the right decision about the type of borrowing for your business

Who is the course for?

This course is intended for those with an interest in developing their financial skills to make robust decisions when managing business finance. The course does not require any previous experience of this subject.

Find further information about OU registration, the assessment module and MBA in the entry requirements. The Open University does not operate in Cuba, Iran, North Korea, Sudan and Syria. This means that Learners based in those countries will not be able to convert their participation in this Program to Open University course credits.

Who will you learn with?

Jane Hughes

Dr Jane Hughes is a lecturer in accounting and finance at the Open University. She is a professional accountant, with over twenty years of business experience in both corporate and financial services.

Who developed the course?

The Open University (OU) is the largest academic institution in the UK and a world leader in flexible distance learning, with a mission is to be open to people, places, methods and ideas.

Buy a personalised, digital and printed certificate and transcript

You can buy a Certificate of Achievement for this course — a personalised certificate and transcript in both digital and printed formats, to prove what you’ve learnt. A Statement of Participation is also available for this course.

Certificate of Achievement + transcript £59.00

Statement of Participation £34.00

Estimate prices in preferred currency

Charges to your account will be made in GBP. Prices in local currency are provided as a convenience and are only an estimate based on current exchange rates.