While the optimism levels in some of Britain’s largest businesses have dropped dramatically, small businesses are vowing to remain upbeat, claims a new report.
Make It Cheaper’s bi-annual Business Confidence Survey has revealed that small business confidence has increased over the past six months, with 76 per cent describing their current outlook as either stabilising or brighter, compared with just 58 per cent six months ago.
“It’s refreshing to know that small business confidence is returning in such a big way, despite public spending cuts and job losses,” says Jonathan Elliott, managing director of Make It Cheaper, which offers a business price comparison and switching service. “There is a clear can-do attitude from those that have already adapted to survive and are running much leaner and more efficient businesses than before.”
The research shows that:
• 18 per cent of bosses believe the business outlook for the current financial year is the brightest it has been in five years, up from nine per cent in April 2010.
• 58 per cent believe their business is stabilising after a hard couple of years, up from 29 per cent.
• Just 24 per cent see the outlook as depressing, with no sign of picking up, compared with 42 per cent six months ago.
John Slater, owner of Lodge Holidays, a small business in South Wales selling holiday cottages on an eco-friendly farm, says: “Things have definitely improved over the past year - the summer season was a real success for us and we are fully booked for Christmas already.
“I would say that the uncertain economic climate, coupled with ash clouds and airline strikes, has certainly influenced more people to stay in the UK and spend their pounds with British businesses like ours.”