small and medium-sized businesses

Over Half of UK Small Businesses Set to Enter New Markets by 2017

Over Half of UK Small Businesses Set to Enter New Markets by 2017

More than half of UK small and medium businesses plan to enter new overseas markets by 2017, with 34% looking to export and a further 30% hoping to tap into new markets in the UK, research by Albion Ventures has found. Of the 34% of firms that plan to expand overseas, the report found that 19% expect to export to markets outside of the EU while 15% are planning to stick to a single market. Medium-sized firms appear to be more ambitious than small companies when it comes to growth – 77% expect to target new markets in the next two years compared to 53% of small companies. In regards to sectors, manufacturing firms led the way with 75% planning to enter new markets, followed by marketing and advertising at 68% and IT/ telecoms at 56%. Regionally, London-based firms are the most likely to ent... »

Employee Sickness is Putting Small Business Growth at Risk

Employee Sickness is Putting Small Business Growth at Risk

Staff sickness is potentially harming the growth of UK small and medium-sized businesses with 32% of firms having lost money due to employee sickness, according to new research by Bupa. The study, which interviewed 500 small business owners, found that 46% of business leaders believed an employee taking an early short-term absence would be damaging for growth while 47% admitted their growth would be hampered if a worker took a significant period of absence. Despite the impact of staff sickness, the research found that small businesses are continuing to “underestimate the importance” of factoring employee health in their future growth strategy. Only 46% of business owners said that employee health and wellbeing is a key factor in their business plan and 43% of leaders admitted they have nev... »