It’s estimated that 20% of the workforce take their annual leave during August, although anecdotally, based on calls made, it feels as though this estimate should be higher. Certainly the decision making process within many SME’s appears to halt altogether at this time of year.
Historically, September has been a busy and productive month as businesses return to normal, often with management having had time away from work to evaluate their business and its aspirations. This may involve a review of existing finance facilities to ensure their suitability to meet aspirations and objectives.
As management consider their finance options the scope of facilities has never been wider but it is still estimated that just over 50% of SME’s are not aware of any options available away from their own bank. Given the attitude and abilities within the banks this effectively means that many, many businesses are ill served and may struggle to access finance that is readily available but they are just not aware it exists.
If it is correct that over half of SME’s are unaware of all the options available then that fact reflects poorly on banks and other professional advisers who have the ear of SME’s. It should be incumbent on banks to point their customer in the direction of the most appropriate finance and likewise professional advisers ought to be aware of the funding market as a whole.
Highlight of the week was a day at the races with the Ultimate Finance Group, they fit into the category of alternative finance providers offering a range of SME facilities from construction, asset and trade finance through to invoice finance. Aside from the horse racing (and tipping winners is not amongst their skills!) learning more of their offerings was extremely useful.
Having already referred a couple of deals to them, successfully converted, they seem to take an innovative approach to client funding, so far much appreciated by the actual clients.