26/10/10

By Claire West

Over a third of the UK’s SMEs have forecasted revenue loss over the next year as a result of Wednesday’s Comprehensive Spending Review, while four in ten (41 per cent) state their business won’t see any growth through 2011.

A survey conducted late last week, of over 100 SMEs, by business-focused ISP Eclipse Internet, found that nearly two-thirds (66 per cent) are nervous about the knock-on effects of the report. When asked for their views on the ‘Train to Gain’ programme being axed, over a quarter (28 per cent) cited it a mistake by the Government.

The poll also asked SMEs what they hoped the Spending Review would achieve. Thirty-one per cent said they hoped the UK business environment would strengthen, while 64 and 60 per cent respectively said they hoped red tape would reduce and the tax system would simplify.

Clodagh Murphy, Director at Eclipse, commented on the research: “It’s clear that UK SMEs are nervous about what could happen as a result of Wednesday’s report, with many forecasting revenue loss and no growth for 2011.

“It’s also disappointing to see the Train to Gain programme being axed and this research notes that some SMEs feel this was a mistake.

“On the other hand, with such significant public sector cuts, it is possible that the Review will present SMEs with new opportunities to become more effective and competitive suppliers to the public sector. Whatever 2011 brings to UK SMEs, with such a substantial contribution to UK GDP, it is essential the Government does what it can to enable SMEs to prosper and flourish.”