Small businesses expect growth

Fifty-three per cent of small businesses in the North West expect to grow in the next 12 months, a new survey has revealed. Launched in conjunction with Kingston University, is based on an in-depth study of 1,000 owner managers.

The survey found that 63 per cent of their supplies from within the region, providing strong support for other businesses in the area. These firms are also contributing to the region’s economy by selling 32 per cent of the goods and services produced outside of the region, bringing additional revenue to the area.

However, over two-thirds of sales by these businesses are to customers in the North West, higher than in any other region in Great Britain. A total of 69 per cent of small companies are actively engaged in innovation, while nearly a fifth are set to make investments in training next year.

“Overall the analysis shows that small businesses make a major contribution to their local and regional economies, particularly in the North West where links to local customers and suppliers are strong,” said Professor Robert Blackburn from the small business research centre at Kingston University.

“However, whilst this localism is crucial to providing opportunities for consolidation and growth, it is also important for these businesses to look for customers and markets further afield if they are to move to a next stage of development.”

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