SMEs have finally recovered from the recession » SMEInsider

SMEs have finally recovered from the recession

Growth and start-up rates have returned to ‘pre-crisis’ levels, meaning that small businesses have recuperated from the 2008 financial crisis, according to the Enterprise Research Centre (ERC).

The academic centre has published its figures regarding the growth of small businesses ahead of its State of Small Business Britain conference in Birmingham today. The ERC have created a UK Growth Dashboard 2015, a document which shows where SME activity is taking place nationally as well as showcasing the improvements made by UK small businesses.

The ERC discovered that between 2008 and 2014, over 1m SMEs were forced to shut down, costing over 5.7m jobs. In that same period however, new start-ups created 4m jobs while other companies hired 9.4m, creating a total of 13.4m new jobs.

‘‘SME Britain is finally back to where it was before the recession in terms of jobs, growth and start-up activity,’’ said Professor Mark Hart, Deputy Director of ERC.

As well as this, the ERC states that by the end of 2014 the number of private sector jobs created since 2008 had exceeded those lost by 400,000.

‘‘For many SMEs, it’s been a long, hard road over the past few years but our research is showing that entrepreneurs and small to medium-sized businesses right across the UK have the wind back in their sails,’’ continued Hart.

Scotland, South and North Lanarkshire have the highest proportion of fast-growing firms, just slightly behind London, which at 18.6 per cent has the highest proportion out of any location in the UK.

The recent success experienced by small businesses can largely be put down to the increased access to funding, as the Bank of England found that during the first three months of the year, small businesses have gained over £600m in funding from high street banks.