The Birmingham office of Close Invoice Finance - one of the leading independent providers of invoice discounting - plans to boost funding opportunities for Midlands businesses with the launch of what is said to be the market's first entirely web-based product.

Close Invoice says that IDeal is an Internet-based software system designed to integrate securely with all available accounting packages, making paperless invoice discounting a reality.

The firm claims that onorous paperwork, such as the production of invoice listings, copy credit notes and monthly reconciliations will no longer be required.

The system will also reconcile on a daily rather than monthly basis, meaning that Ideal clients could see up to a 15 per cent gain in available funds.

David Butler, Close Invoice Finance's Midlands regional sales director, said: "The term unique is often used inappropriately in business, but on this occasion I think it's justified.

"I can't recall another solution that takes the hassle out of cash flow management like IDeal. To remove all of the paper and the manual monthly reconciliation process is a real breakthrough.

"IDeal sits on a secure web-based platform and because it is fully automated it lifts all the required ledger information direct from any of the available accounting software packages. All invoicing and customer payment transactions are conducted through Ideal, which automatically self-reconciles on a daily basis."

IDeal is available to any business using an electronic software package and having UK sales of at least £200,000 a year. It is particularly suitable to businesses which have previously only been able to access factoring-led solutions from other providers or which have not been able to gain an invoice discounting facility due to stringent qualification criteria.

Mr Butler added: "IDeal loses none of the benefits of traditional facilities as it can be run on a completely confidential basis. Customers of firms using IDeal can be completely unaware of the funding arrangements in place.

"IDeal also makes sound financial sense. It is being offered for a fixed monthly administration charge set according to the turnover of the business. This means that any client knows in advance exactly how much IDeal will cost in any given year.