Do you run your own small business?
Are you trying to get credit to fund expansion, but struggling to make any head way? If you are then you really aren’t treading that path on your own. Most accountants will tell you that many SMEs are facing exactly the same problems as you are: many can’t get access to the finance they need for expansion because many of the big lenders still aren’t playing ball. It’s a gloomy picture as things stand, but there could well be some hope on the horizon. In June this year the government announced the introduction of the Small Business Bill, and that raised the hope of many SMEs.
So what is the Small Business Bill, and what it’s in it for SMEs?
Well, the aim of the Bill was to remove some of the barriers and stimulate small business growth, thereby strengthening the foundations for the UK’s economic recovery. According to Business Secretary, Vince Cable, its plan was to improve access to finance primarily through building-out the availability and sources of investment for SMEs. By opening up access to small business credit data, the government believed it would be easier for SMEs to secure a loan from lenders rather than the banks.
What’s more, the government believes the transparency of company ownership and control within the bill is expected to lead to the creation of registers of persons with ‘significant’ control over most companies as well as the formation of a central register at Companies House. But won’t the costs of these changes be prohibitive? Well, apparently not: the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills own impact assessment recognises that the measures should only cost the Government about £300,000 a year to establish and maintain, but could potentially benefit businesses over £500 million in year one and almost £80 million each year thereafter.
Sounds like a plan to the accounting world, you have to agree, but do SMEs feel the same way?
Well, a new survey of the UK’s small businesses has found that the contents of the government’s Small Business Bill are supported by 95% of SMEs, so we guess the answer is yes, they do.
The survey by private equity firm, Key Capital Partners, polled 100 UK SME owners. It found that 95% of the respondents emphatically backed the proposals; with 80%believing the bill would offer their businesses better access to funding.
Peter Armitage, partner at Key Capital Partners, said of the survey:
“SMEs have often struggled with accessing the finance necessary to maximise growth, and up to this point they have received little in the way of assistance from the government.”
“However, our results show that the measures in the Small Business Bill are a step in the right direction. With the Government now standing firmly behind SMEs, growth continues to be a talking point for many businesses.”
Most SMEs will take some comfort from the extra effort that is now being invested on their behalf, but will still need expert advice on funding and growth if they are to fulfil their ambitions. If your business is looking for this expert help and advice on business planning, raising funding or identifying the most-suitable sources of finance, then why not speak to Steven Glicher’s accountants?
For further information call Steven Glicher on 0161 405 8007 or email info@.