9 in 10 UK SMEs say rising energy bills are their biggest challenge

A new survey of 402 decision-makers in UK small and medium-sized businesses has identified the main challenges facing UK businesses in the new financial year.

SMEs held back by rising energy prices

Rising energy prices are a “major” challenge for a third of UK small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), according to a new study by NerdWallet.

The financial comparison website surveyed 402 decision makers within British SMEsand found that more than two-thirds (67%) of decision makers find long-term financial planning difficult due to the current economic climate.

Nine in ten (89%) decision makers in SMEs said that rising energy prices are the biggest threat to their business. A third (33%) see it as a “major” threat to their organization.

87% of SME decision makers see skyrocketing inflation as a challenge for their business. Another 82% are struggling with rising interest rates.

Not just energy prices

Other concerns for SMEs are increasing rental costs (72%) and difficulty accessing finance such as business loans, credit cards or investments (71%).

In fact, almost a quarter (24%) of SMEs believe rising interest rates have made it more difficult for their organization to access finance.

Meanwhile, 46% of decision makers in SMEs could not budget salary increases in line with inflation. The majority (57%) say their organization has increased the prices of goods and services in line with rising organization costs.

Connor Campbell, Personal Finance Expert at NerdWallet, said: “SMEs have faced countless challenges over the past two years. And unfortunately, NerdWallet’s research shows that there’s unlikely to be any respite anytime soon.

“Of course some tough decisions have to be made – raising the prices of goods and services, for example, is likely to be seen as an unfortunate necessity to keep businesses afloat. Therefore, the government needs to ensure that SMEs are aware of the tools available to ease the burden somewhat. Publicizing programs like start-up loans would be a good place to start. Alternatively, SMEs could use comparison websites to explore alternative financing options.

“There is no quick fix to the challenges businesses face. But there are tools that could offer something of a financial lifeline. Therefore, SMEs should be encouraged to remain as flexible as possible and use all the tools at their disposal to explore their options. This allows SMEs to gradually regain control of their finances.”

https://techround.co.uk/news/9-in-10-uk-smes-say-rising-energy-bills-is-their-biggest-challenge/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=9-in-10-uk-smes-say-rising-energy-bills-is-their-biggest-challenge 9 in 10 UK SMEs say rising energy bills are their biggest challenge

Fry Electronics Team

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