SMEs look for credit to fuel growth ambitions


SMEs look for credit to fuel growth ambitions

Simon Quicke
credit-cards.jpgSMEs are planning to grow their businesses if the economy doesn't cause them too many problems with more looking for credit and finance to grow in the next few months.

The latest BDRC Continental SME Finance Monitor paints a picture of more small firms getting access to credit and an increase in confidence about the future.

The potential problems that could wash that optimism away include the general state of the economy, legislation and red tape and ongoing issues with late payment.

The trend appears to be that if you had an existing line of credit then extending it or renewing it has been easier than getting hold of fresh funds with 90% of renewal applications over the last year being successful compared to 59% for new facilities.

More SMEs planned to grow their businesses with the highest figure for a year, 48%, indicating that they plan to expand with smaller firms in particular keen to widen their reach.

As a result more SMEs will apply for credit in the next quarter than the previous three months and many were confident their requests would get the banks approval.

"With the 12 months of data in the SME Finance Monitor, we can see that overall overdraft success rates have improved but that challenges remain for applications for new or increased borrowing," said Shiona Davies, director of BDRC Continental.

In response the BBA, the voice of the banking and finance industry, pointed out in a statement that the banks were now focusing on helping SMEs that were walking away from credit that could help them grow their businesses.

"The banks are focusing their efforts on businesses that consider seeking finance but don't for some reason (e.g. because of the economic climate or because they feel they will be turned down), and those that have been declined the finance they requested," the BBA stated.

"Through initiatives such as the independently-monitored appeals process, the UK-wide network of business mentors and more accessible information on alternative funding options available for businesses, the UK's banks are working to ensure all viable SMEs get either the finance they need or the skills and assistance they need to secure it," it added.

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