PR firms and service firms in need of funds can auction off their receivables to the highest bidder in a service operated since 2007 by the Receivables Exchange.

This service is different from factoring, which involves the sale of receivables to one or more companies.

Debt collection is a problem for PR firms that have mapped out ambitious programs for clients that have yet to bear fruit.

Harold Suckenik, who wrote a legal column for O'Dwyer's for many years, once said he had acquired more than 50 clients through the column and that most of them involved debt collection.

The current nearly four-year recession has no doubt increased the difficulties of obtaining full payment from clients who may be victims of the downturn.

The Receivables Exchange says that companies can get funds “in as little as 24 hours at competitive terms.”

TRE recently linked with NetSuite’s Cloud Computing Platform for the real-time, online sale and purchase of receivables.

TRE estimates that small and medium-sized businesses have $17 trillion of receivables.

Clients can sell one or many receivables and set the terms. Customers are not told of use of TRE.