Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?

Investing

Scottish SMEs gloomier about growth prospects than anywhere else in UK

Stressed Businesswoman at Work

Leaders of small businesses in Scotland are much gloomier about the prospects of growth than anywhere else in the UK.

The Research suggests that small firm owners here are half as confident about growth than their counterparts in London and significantly short of the UK average.

Wales ranks slightly above Scotland in the number of small firms expecting growth.

Overall in the UK 26% of small business owners predict growth in the three-months to 31 March – just a 1% change on Q3 2020 and Q4 2021 respectively.

But only 17% of owners in Scotland and 18% in Wales are are forecasting growth over the quarter.

Following a crash in small business growth forecasts during the first lockdown in March 2020 – falling from 39% to 14% overnight – the proportion of small business owners UK-wide predicting growth doubled the following quarter and has remained at a similar level ever since.

Whilst directors in the finance/accounting, media/marketing and IT/telecoms sectors drive UK growth predictions for the three-month period to 31 March, the Hitachi Capital data also revealed areas of concern.

Nationally, 29% of small businesses in the retail sector feared contraction or collapse in the next three months, and the hospitality/leisure sector emerged as deep in crisis – with only 9% predicting any form of growth over the next three months and a record 53% predicting contraction or collapse.

But with growing calls in Scotland for a second independence referendum, the research shows Scottish small businesses to be the least likely in the UK to be predicting any form of growth in the next three months.

The research presents mixed results from those small businesses that have tried to adapt to the lockdown era.

On the plus side, those small businesses that transitioned to home working were more likely than the national average to predict growth (31% versus. 26%), but for businesses that had tried – or been forced – to restructure and repurpose the picture was less positive.

Of those only 15% of ventures predicted growth in the next three months, whilst a concerning 50% predicted contraction or even collapse.

Joanna Morris, head of insight at Hitachi Capital Business Finance, who commissioned the research, said: “We live in unprecedented times and the surprises from our latest quarterly study reflect this.

“Overall, it is hugely positive that growth outlook for the small business sector as a community remains strong. Our study showed how dramatically confidence fell with the first lockdown in March 2020, and whilst growth forecasts have not matched pre-pandemic levels, the consistency of more than one in four predicting growth over each of the last three quarters is a firm and positive building block for the British economy.

“If we dig deeper into the detail, there are areas of concern.

“When it comes to growth plans, Scottish and Welsh small businesses are lagging behind their English counterparts.

“Whilst home-working has helped businesses to plan and grow, attempts to reinvent businesses has seemingly been more problematic.

“And there is no question that Brexit is impacting the many small businesses that rely on exports – and at the very time when the UK market is in lockdown.

“These are challenges that need to be tackled to ensure the UK small business sector does not become polarised between those who do very well and those facing closure.”

Read more:
Scottish SMEs gloomier about growth prospects than anywhere else in UK

Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Get the daily email that makes reading the news actually enjoyable. Stay informed and entertained, for free.
Your information is secure and your privacy is protected. By opting in you agree to receive emails from us. Remember that you can opt-out any time, we hate spam too!

Latest

Investing

New research has revealed that only one in four civil servants believe their department is following the Government’s National Data Strategy, with skills and...

Economy

Australian mining and logistics firms are interested in doing business in the Philippines according to Australian ambassador Steven J. Robinson, who cited policy reforms...

Investing

As Sunday Times Rich List shows record number of UK billionaires, their gains should be taxed the same as income from work Huge increases...

Investing

A battle is shaping up between major retailers over whether the UK should introduce an online sales tax, with Sainsbury’s demanding it to help...

Investing

The system of executive pay is “broken”, the Church of England’s pension board has said, as it challenged more companies to ease the pain...

Investing

A country pub has received a framed apology from a fashion publishing giant after being threatened with legal action unless the landlords changed its...

You May Also Like

Investing

Having a good Instagram marketing agency to back up your Instagram account is an absolute must going into the new year. With competition stronger...

Economy

Ivermectin, an existing drug against parasites including head lice, has had a checkered history when it comes to treating COVID-19. The bulk of studies...

Investing

Insomnia is the most common sleep disorder in the global population. Therefore, it is a problem that many people suffer or have suffered throughout...

Investing

As a traditionally rigid insurance industry becomes bogged down by antiquated processes and operations, a handful of industry leaders are seeking to shake things...

Disclaimer: SmartRetirementReport.com, its managers, its employees, and assigns (collectively "The Company") do not make any guarantee or warranty about what is advertised above. Information provided by this website is for research purposes only and should not be considered as personalized financial advice. The Company is not affiliated with, nor does it receive compensation from, any specific security. The Company is not registered or licensed by any governing body in any jurisdiction to give investing advice or provide investment recommendation. Any investments recommended here should be taken into consideration only after consulting with your investment advisor and after reviewing the prospectus or financial statements of the company.

Copyright © 2021 SmartRetirementReport. All Rights Reserved.