No Respite From Late Payment Woes For SMEs

SERT highlights late payment, but also find increased employment and sales during Q3.

By News Desk
4th December 2007 at 15:43

The latest quarterly survey of small businesses in Britain from the Small Enterprise Research Trust (SERT) at the Open University Business School reveals that 56% of small businesses say they are owed more money by customers than they owe to suppliers.

On average larger firms take 20 days longer to pay bills than smaller ones, according to Experian, and this continues to cause knock-on cash flow difficulties for SMEs across the UK.

Micro-businesses with a turnover under £50,000 per annum suffer most with many funding late payment generated shortfalls with expensive overdrafts and credit cards.  A ‘double-whammy’ as the SERT points out.

The survey also highlighted some positive trends.  Just under half (48%) of firms increased sales over the last 12 month and the proportion saying they had recruited extra staff grew from 16% last year to 21% this.

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