With 2016 drawing to a close, it is the time of year when industries reflect on the events of the past 12 months. Rarely, however, are a year’s events as momentous as those of 2016, which saw Britain vote to leave the EU, the Government’s front bench receive a dramatic overhaul, interest rates cut to record lows, and Donald Trump win a US Presidential election.
Despite the significant developments of 2016, new research has shown that SMEs are undeterred in their pursuit growth finance – in fact, small business appetite for long term equity-based finance has increased significantly in the last 12 months, with 44% of SME owners considering equity finance, up from 34% a year ago and 12% in 2013. Meanwhile, demand for traditional bank finance from 49% in 2015 to 45% this year.
First and foremost, the figures underline the resilience of Britain’s 5.5 million small businesses, with many looking to seize the opportunities provided by this period of transition. Furthermore, the statistics highlight the increasingly important role alternative finance is playing in enabling SMEs to scale up; as bank lending declines, small businesses are evidently embracing new routes to finance, including debt and equity investment.
Next week IW Capital will be releasing its own report reviewing the landmark events that have shaped a truly transformative 2016 and examining how they have impacted SMEs and alternative finance. Moreover, we will be forecasting what the coming 12 months have in store for both the UK’s business owners and SME investors.
To receive the report, be sure to join Access 42, IW Capital’s exclusive community for SME investors. Click here to become a member today.