UK study shows SMEs keen on alternative financing

A survey from Amicus says the majority of UK SMEs see alternative finance as a viable funding source and predict more SMEs will look to non-traditional lenders.

More than half of UK small and medium enterprises (SMEs) have used or considered using alternative forms of financing, a report from UK-based financial specialist lender Amicus Finance has revealed.

51 percent of SMEs said that crowdsourcing financing, such as peer-to-peer lending, invoice financing and property financing presented viable options for funding compared to traditional bank lending, according to a study from Amicus. The firm’s survey published last year found 42 percent of SMEs considered such funding options. The UK lender surveyed 400 SMEs last month.

Of the businesses surveyed, 53 percent predicted that the appetite for alternative financing would increase over the next two years. SMEs based in the north-west of England were the most confident that demand for alternative financing would grow, with 69 percent stating that it would increase.

This contrasts with the attitudes of London-based SMEs, where just over half anticipate a rise in demand for new funding sources, and the north-east where just 29 percent believe more SMEs will seek alternative financing channels.

“Demand for alternative finance is set to go from strength to strength over the coming years as mainstream lenders struggle to evolve to adequately support a thriving small business community,” said John Jenkins, chief executive of Amicus.