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How UK SMEs can make the most of export market push

The government is urging UK SMEs to target overseas growth. So, how can these companies fund export market expansion? Alternative finance has a key role to play.

The government is launching a new initiative to promote export opportunities for UK businesses. The drive has a solid grounding, with the number of small business set to take advantage of export revenues expected to rise to 880,000 by 2025 according to a new study from the Centre for Economic and Business Research (Cebr). This will represent 17% of the total number of SMEs, compared with 11% of the current total. According to Cebr, those leading the charge will be IT and telecoms, manufacturing and media, marketing and PR firms.

However, such a step is not straightforward for these companies, a sentiment underlined by new data from Sage. According to the research, three quarters of small businesses do not engage in export activity and do not plan to. Barriers include a lack of knowledge of overseas markets and a lack of support. The cost of such growth is another major issue.

Overseas expansion requires investment, which necessitates the availability of capital and good cashflow. The attitude of traditional lenders has made accessing finance challenging – this is why the popularity of alternative finance services such as invoice finance, peer-to-peer lending and crowdfunding has risen sharply in recent years. Record amounts are being raised through these services and challenger banks are posting stellar results on the back of them.

As such, as UK SMEs look forward and the sector gets ready to take another major step along the road to recovery, it is clear that the alternative finance sector will be playing a major role in providing the financial means for them to do so.

To find out more about A&T Business Associates services, contact us on 01903 602211 or info@atbusinessassociates.co.uk.

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