UK SMEs 'optimistic' about 2020 trading prospects
Business survey reveals UK companies are optimistic about trade opportunities for 2020, with many companies seeking to increase investment, hiring and innovation spending, according to new research
UK small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are optimistic about the year ahead, projecting average revenue growth of 6.3 per cent according to a new survey from Barclaycard and YouGov. Average revenue growth for businesses across the UK is expected to be 6.3 per cent over the next 12 months, with London businesses expecting growth of 6.5 per cent.
The research found businesses were most confident about their supply chain and their cashflow, with nearly half of London businesses (48 per cent) stating that their supply chain is strong and more than half said their cash flow is also strong. Small businesses in construction and real estate have the highest predicted quarterly growth at 6.3 per cent, while professional services firms are most confident about the year ahead, expecting an annual boost of 9.8 per cent.
Sridhar Iyengar, MD of Zoho Europe commented: “With Brexit complete, a stable government in place and international trade tensions ceasing, it’s no surprise that SMEs are confident about the year ahead. And for good reason, too: economic clarity for the first time in almost half a decade certainly offers a great excuse for businesses to seize the opportunity for growth, and gain a foothold in fiercely competitive markets. “To help acquire an edge over competitors, SMEs, and indeed larger corporations, must consider adopting the right technology to assist them at this golden opportunity for success.
Simultaneously, key IT services must be scaled up so that ambitious, growing businesses are helped, not hindered, by core IT infrastructure. Such technology and IT services which should be upgraded or introduced, must include: cloud-enabled performance analytics, client relationship management, and enterprise resource management software, in order to critically and accurately inform decision-makers on how to grow, where to invest funds and areas of weakness in the business.”
Michael Haston, CEO, Leonne International added: “There is no doubt that thousands of small businesses from hundreds of industries will use this golden opportunity to self-invest and grow – unfortunately, not all SMEs are in this position. Many, having been affected by the complicated trade and unclear economic outlook in the past few years, simply don’t have the resources at this time to invest in growth, thus they will be left behind by fierce competition. “Moving forward, SMEs in this position must consider financial investment from a specialist private equity firm, so that it can use a substantial cash injection to seize this once in a decade opportunity for growth, and maintain a foothold in an increasingly competitive market.
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