UK Contractors: Research finds nearly half of smaller sized firms are planning to grow in 2015
A new survey has revealed that many smaller sized businesses, such as Limited companies, are eager to grow in the next year, however, many are unaware of alternative finance options available.
The ‘Small Business Finance Markets 2014’ report, the first of a series of annual British Business Bank reports covering smaller business finance markets in the UK, has shown that the nature of demand for finance is changing among smaller sized firms.
Findings revealed that 54% of companies raising finance did so to purchase fixed assets or to expand, which is up from 39% two years ago.
However, despite 68% of businesses saying they were confident in their ability to obtain external finance, significant barriers remain for small businesses seeking finance. A major barrier is the lack of awareness of various funding choices and sources of finance.
Business Secretary Vince Cable, commented, “I announced the setting up of the Business Bank two years ago to provide much needed new finance for SMEs. Two years on, the British Business Bank is helping over 35,000 smaller businesses secure the capital they need to invest and grow.
“This new research — the first of its kind by the British Business Bank – is a useful benchmark for measuring the challenges ahead in making British businesses aware of the various alternative finance options available in the market. This is particularly important given the findings also show that almost half of British SMEs plan to expand in the next year. I am confident more businesses will be able to realise those ambitions thanks to the new finance on offer, especially on the equity side.”
Keith Morgan, CEO of British Business Bank, said, “It is clear from our research that there is increasing confidence among UK small businesses and an appetite for growth. The challenge now is to connect the emerging demand for finance with the new forms of funding that are becoming available.
“That is why the British Business Bank is working to encourage innovation, promote diversity and share information, to develop a more broadly based and accessible lending market for smaller businesses.”
Matthew Hancock, Minister of State at the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills, added, “This British Business Bank research shows small firms want to grow, and access to finance is slowly getting better. But there is still much more to do. I won’t rest until Britain is the best place in the world to start and grow a business and the extra support for British Business Bank announced at Autumn Statement will help us in that mission.”
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