Despite ongoing worries about red tape and restrictive legislation that tie small business owners in knots, there are still 3 clear reasons why now is a great time to start your own business.
1) Better access to financing
The post recession funding nightmare has hit the SME sector incredibly hard in recent years, with banks battening down the hatches and leaving many new business owners with few options in terms of financing. The silver lining of this dark economic cloud has been the inevitable rise of alternative financing options, with an array of potential solutions, funding schemes and more for the particular benefit of startups.
Take MarketInvoice, which has facilitated over £400 million in funding for UK businesses since its launch in February 2011, and has delivered over 6,200 individual loans to high growth businesses across the UK. All invoices listed for sale on MarketInvoice have been funded in full, the vast majority within seconds of being listed. This year alone, nearly £100m has already been funded – an increase of 30% year-on-year.
MarketInvoice CEO and co-founder Anil Stocker said:
“The UK business community is fast realising that our service can help companies at all stages of growth, from start up to scale up and beyond. We are continuing to see more and more businesses use our service and already have our sights firmly set on hitting the milestone of £1 billion of funding for businesses.”
There’s also a range of new loan plans being unveiled, including, most recently, a £40m investment fund to support SMEs launched by Santander, Enterprise Ventures and the Greater Manchester Pension Fund. Even online retailer giant Amazon is joining the fray, announcing that it will be offering small business loans to UK companies selling products through its website.
This all backs up a recent study by property based lenders Amicus, which found that the popularity of alternative lending, including peer-to-peer (P2P), crowdfunding, and business cash advances, is likely to increase by an estimated 26% over the next two years.
2) Bright(er) economic outlook
According to the Guardian newspaper, Britain’s economy grew faster than initially thought in the opening months of 2015, but “still suffered a marked slowdown compared to the end of 2014.” Analysts reportedly said the slowdown would probably prove temporary and the overall picture was of stronger growth. The growth figure for last year was now 3% – the strongest since 2006, before the global financial crisis.
Little wonder then that according to the latest Small Business Index by the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB), UK small businesses “are in a robust mood.” The FSB said that small business confidence has picked up markedly in the second quarter of 2015, with growth and investment intentions reaching new highs since the Index began in 2010.
The FSB said:
“With few negatives in the overall picture, the latest survey readings on job creation, productivity and investment all bode well for small businesses sustaining the economy’s growth through 2015.”
3) Abundant Software solutions
The range of solutions available to small business owners that make running their businesses that much easier, means the learning curve that comes with starting something yourself is a lot less daunting. Many key tasks that used to hinder real success for business owners, because of their own lack of hands on knowledge of said tasks, can now be easily tackled with software. Everything from to taking payments from customers to essential accounting and bookkeeping, can be done simply, and easily. Plus, with the revolution of cloud based solutions available, many of these key business processes can be easily integrated to streamline and simplify.