The following is an excerpt from a recent report published by Lloyds. Whilst there are an array of invoice financing options open to businesses, they are at a cost and as our clients find, not all invoices are financed – that’s when they look for risk free no upfront payment solutions such as debt recovery, to assist in collecting those outstanding invoices.

• UK SMEs are owed £586bn in unpaid invoices, up eight per cent since January

• Businesses own a total of £2.6tn worth of assets, an increase of nearly four per cent since the start of the year

• Late payments are the biggest cause of cash flow problems, and nearly a third of firms (30 per cent) expect it to get worse

British SMEs are owed more than £586billion in outstanding invoices, according to the latest Business in Britain report from Lloyds Bank Commercial Banking.

The average small business is owed more than £108,000 in unpaid invoices, an increase of 8 per cent since the last Business in Britain report in January 2016, with almost a third of firms (29 per cent) citing late payments as the biggest cause of cashflow problems.

The Business in Britain report, which gathers the views of more than 1,500 UK companies,  found that more than 1.5million SMEs (29 per cent) are currently owed more than £200,000 in outstanding invoices, up from 1.3million (25 per cent) in January.

The issue of late payments is likely to persist into 2017, with nearly a third (30 per cent) of businesses expecting more customers to require deferred payment terms in the next six months.

Assets and investment

Meanwhile, British small businesses’ own a combined total of £2.6tn of assets outright, an average of almost £490,000 each. This is an increase of £18,000 per business (or 4 per cent) since the start of the year.

Businesses said they were expecting to invest an average of £1.5m into their business over the next six months, up marginally from January, suggesting they remain undeterred by recent political and economic shocks.

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