Banks lending to larger businesses

Small and medium sized enterprises are using external funding and the majority of applications for finance are being met, according to new research.


Small and medium sized enterprises are using external funding and the majority of applications for finance are being met, according to new research.

Small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) are using external funding and the majority of applications for finance are being met, according to new research.

Some 51 per cent of companies are using external finance, rising to 81 per cent among those with 50-249 employees, reveals the SME Finance Monitor of over 5,000 UK businesses, published by BDRC Continental.

Of those SMEs that apply for an overdraft, 72 per cent are successful, while 59 per cent of loan applicants received the finance they required.

Shiona Davies, director at market research consultancy BDRC Continental, says the study shows that certain SMEs are ‘less likely to get facilities’.

‘Bigger SMEs are more likely to be offered what they want. For overdrafts, 83 per cent of applicants with 10-249 employees got what they wanted straight away against 71 per cent of those with nine or fewer employees,’ Davies explains.

Similarly, of those applying for a loan, 69 per cent of applicants with a workforce of 10-249 were initially successful, compared to 58 per cent of businesses with nine or fewer workers.

Younger SMEs are also more likely to be refused financing initially, according to the findings, with only 54 per cent of businesses under ten years old granted an overdraft following an application.

Just 44 per cent of SMEs that have been trading for less than ten years were offered the loan they applied for.

The report also found that 15 per cent of businesses were unrequited, meaning they wanted to apply for funding in the last 12 months but had not done so.

UK SMEs cited the current economic climate as one of the reasons for not applying for financing.

Discouragement, either after making an informal enquiry at the bank, or the expectation of being turned down, is also preventing companies from asking for funding.

The results are from the first edition of the quarterly report which aims to review bank finance and identify business needs.

Todd Cardy

Todd Cardy

Todd was Editor of GrowthBusiness.co.uk between 2010 and 2011 as well as being responsible for publishing our digital and printed magazines focusing on private equity and venture capital. Connect with...

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