Survey Finds Two Thirds Of UK Small Businesses Are Confident About Their Prospects In 2015, But Only One Third Of SMEs Are Confident Of Securing The Finance To Achieve Growth.

What does 2015 hold for small businesses?

Well, if the results of the latest Liberis survey are correct, then the answer is good news, and as accountants we know that there’s nothing better than starting the new year with a bit of good news. The poll of 1,000 SME owners, carried out by OnePoll and commissioned by small business funder, Liberis, found that the vast majority of small and medium-sized enterprises are confident about the prospect of growing their business in the next 12 months.

So what exactly did the survey find? Well, over 68% of the respondents stated that were feeling upbeat and positive about their prospects in the coming year.

Moreover, over half of the small firms questioned are expecting their business to grow during the course of the year. That’s got to be good news then, hasn’t it? Well, it depends on which way you look at it. Although two thirds of SMEs are expecting their businesses to prosper during 2015, a third of small businesses are expecting their businesses to decline, thanks largely to cash flow concerns and increasing costs eating into profits. So it’s not a completely rosy picture.

How is this growth going to be funded? Well, in terms of business finance, OnePoll found that 40% of SMEs would be seeking external funding to underpin growth plans in 2015. Of those businesses, three quarters were confident that they would be able to secure the necessary finance, through either banks funds (just under 50%), or from alternative funding providers. Unfortunately OnePoll also found that a third of SME owners would not be going to either banks or other lenders to seek finance. The reason for this being that they believed they would not be able to secure this.

Why were so many small businesses seeking external finance? Well, OnePoll’s findings suggest that the principle reason was to pay an outstanding tax bill, closely followed by maintaining day-to-day running costs and buying new stock and equipment.

Speaking about the survey, Paul Mildenstein, CEO of Liberis said:

“It’s good to see such a widespread level of confidence and expectations of growth, but it is still tough trading for a considerable number of small businesses who are concerned about cash flow and costs and need funding to help with every-day expenses to see them through.”

Securing finance is particularly tough for start-ups at the moment as the report from the British Business Bank found in December, 2014. The report found that although many start-ups seek finance through traditional avenues, many were unaware of the alternative funding arrangements available to them. The British Bank’s hope is that more small and medium-sized businesses will be made aware of the new finance on offer, to enable successful firms to maintain organic growth in the coming year.

Is your SME having difficulty raising finance, or struggling to find credit to fund expansion? Would you like some expert help and advice? Then why not speak to Steven Glicher’s accountants? Our accountants can help your business raise finance and can give you expert advice on identifying the type of funding you need, finding the most suitable sources of finance, and calculating the cash-flow projections, budgets, and trading forecasts. For further information give us a call on 0161 485 8007, or email info@stevenglicher.co.uk

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