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Haines Watts Exeter Phone icon 01392 260310

SME Business News Round-up May

As ever, I review what’s been reported in the press that affects you, the business owner and what is happening in the SME world.

Not a mention about care fees or renewing Trident – I promise!

Sourcing the workers you need, post Brexit?

One measure you may have missed in the Conservative manifesto is the restating of a net migration target to the previous target of 100,000 per year.

The Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR) has said that reducing the net migration figure from 273,000 to 105,000 would cost the public finances £5.9bn by 2020.

What they don’t say is that if migration falls to this much lower figure, will owner managed businesses be able to source the labour they need to trade profitably?

Patrick comments :  It seems likely that a deal will be done on EU nationals already here.  However, a problem might occur if businesses want a new supply of EU labour.

MTD – are you ready?

Not a disease or a shortened form of Manchester United, but ‘Making Tax Digital’.  This is where tax payers and small businesses will have to report their profit and income figures 4 times a year.

It has been reported that most businesses have either not heard of it or are in no way ready for it.

Patrick comments : This is coming in, seemingly whatever the result of the Election.  I will do a blog shortly advising business owners on MTD and what they can do to  prepare…

A small companies Cabinet Minister…?

Don’t laugh, it could happen.  Our own Institute of Chartered Accountants in England & Wales has joined with 13 other organisations to push for increased support for exporters and for increased access to public sector contracts.

They propose:

  • The appointment of a Cabinet Minister with responsibility for Small Companies
  • One in three SME contracts be placed with an SME

Patrick comments : A laudable idea but reduced red tape for SME public sector contracts should be a must – SMEs should not have to state their equality policy or commitment to a renewables policy for example.

Supply chain changes

In a survey of more than 2,000 supply chain managers, the Chartered Institute of Procurement and Supply found that45% of EU businesses with UK suppliers are already sourcing alternative local suppliers in case a post Brexit trade deal does not materialise.  However, almost 1/3 of UK businesses with EU suppliers are doing the same thing, i.e. looking for local suppliers.

Additionally, 65% of UK businesses have seen their supply chains become more expensive due to the weak pound.

Patrick comments : This is potentially a good opportunity for UK businesses to source new customers and contracts.

And finally – the Election…

We can’t escape it completely – just for interest, a survey of over 2,000 business owners found that:

  • 41% would vote Conservative
  • 13% would vote Labour
  • 9% would vote Lib Dem
  • 21% preferred not to say
  • 6% said they would not vote

Patrick comments : Whatever your voting intentions, roll on the 9th June is what I say!

Until next month…







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