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Capital Expenditure (CapEx) 2024: Guide for Businessmen and Investors

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Table of Contents

What is Capital Expenditure (CapEx)?

What are the Different Types of CapEx?

How CapEx Can Be Calculated?

Where is CapEx used?


How much do you know about Capital expenditure? In simple terms, it means the funds that are spent by an organization on those things that can help with its growth and ensure more income in the future. The Capital expenditure incurred by an organization gives analysts and investors an insight about its future plans and investment patterns.

Read and know all about Capital expenditure, which is also referred to as CapEx, the different types of Capital expenditure, how it differs from revenue expenditure, etc.

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What is Capital Expenditure (CapEx)?

It refers to the money that is used by a company for acquiring, upgrading and maintenance of assets such as equipments, technology, buildings, plants or property.

Capital expenditure is generally used for undertaking new investments or projects by a business. But it can also include the purchase and repair of a piece of equipment. This outlay is useful for companies in adding something that will be economically beneficial for the future or giving a boost to the scope of operations.

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Explaining Capital expenditure

Capital expenditure is the amount that is paid for the services and goods capitalized or recorded on the balance sheet of a business, rather than the income statement. The capitalization of assets needs businesses to have the cost of an expenditure spread over an asset’s useful life.

Typically, in case the useful life of an item is less than 1 year, it is recorded on the income statement as an expense instead of being capitalized. In other words, it is not regarded as a Capital expenditure.

There are times when some forms of Capital expenditure, which might be of comparatively smaller value, are left non-capitalized. For instance, any expense on the purchase of some calculators at a steel and iron manufacturing unit might be regarded as revenue expenditure, despite the fact that the useful life of calculators is generally more than one year.

The amount of Capital expenditure possessed by a business is based on the industry that it operates in. Expenditures are of the highest level in most of the capital-intensive industries out there. This includes utility, manufacturing, telecommunications, oil production and oil exploration industries.

What are the Different Types of CapEx?

The long-term value of a company gets contribution from various kinds of assets. Naturally there are different kinds of assets which can be regarded as CapEx.


The purchase or upgrade of a property or building is regarded as a Capital expenditure. This is because the asset is going to have a useful life for many years to come.


Machinery and equipment used in various industries, such as the manufacturing industry, for the production of goods might simply wear out or become obsolete. In case the equipment needs frequent upgrades and these are higher as compared to the capitalization limit in place, it is important to capitalize the cost.

Software upgrades

For bigger-sized companies, software expenditures can be a major cost. The cost of buying or upgrading software programs can be regarded as Capital expenditure, in case it matches particular criteria.

Servers and computers

Servers and computers may be used for supporting the various operations of a business, including communication of operations, reporting and logistics. These are regarded as Capital expenditure in case these have a full life of more than 1 year.


Various types of furniture items can be used for furnishing and office building in order to provide customers and office staff with usable space. It can be useful in generating more income over the years and thus, can be regarded as Capital expenditure.


Vehicles can be used for picking up clients the transportation of goods or for business purposes by staffs. These are regarded to be Capital expenditures, regardless of the factor that these were probably financed with debt or purchased outright.

Intangible assets

There can be long-term value of patents, given the fact that it is through product development that the right to own an idea becomes a reality.

It is not that assets for CapEx should be tangible or physical in nature. These can be abstract as well.

How CapEx Can Be Calculated?

Capital expenditure can be calculated by using data from balance sheet and income statement of a company. On the income statement it is possible to find depreciation expenses listed for the current year. On the balance sheet, one can find a list of assets mentioned.

It is easy to find CapEx in the flow of cash from investment activities, in the cash flow statement of a business. It is highlighted by various companies in various ways, such as acquisition expense, purchases of property, plant, and equipment (PP&E), or capital spending.

Where is CapEx used?

You can find these being used in:

Financial Statements

In the financial statements of a business, Capex is an important component. Accountants who are generally in charge of making such statements should know about CapEx and find out how this can fit in with the rest of the finances of the business.


Before commencement, enough preparation is required for Capital expenditure budgets. It is important for businesses to determine the project scope, figure out deadlines that are achievable and make sure that the entire plan is approved and reviewed properly. During such a stage, they have to determine the various internal resources needed for the Capital expenditure.

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Investors can take the annual Capital expenditure of a company into account, in order to get a proper idea about its possible growth in the future, apart from various other factors.


In a company, taxation experts have to track all the CapEx in order to have a proper idea about how to report and claim these on tax documents.

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Capital expenditure means the expenditure of a business in order to acquire its assets as well as upgrade and maintain it. This type of expenditure has a vital role to play in the long-term financial health of the organization. CapEx is essential for the growth of businesses and ensuring that they can maintain their competitive edge. 

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