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‘Now is the time for small business to take big risks’

Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in the UK have been told that now is the time to take risks and make bold decisions for the future.

The call has come from Stephen Watson, the chief executive of the Business Growth Fund, who has stressed the need to be assertive and ambitious in order to safeguard the future of businesses throughout the country.

He observed that business investment is needed in order to drive the domestic economy and said that now is the perfect time to invest.

“I don’t say this of all businesses, but I am surprised when I come across an evident lack of ambition in some entrepreneurs and business owners to take a good business to the next level, to make it more competitive and productive,” Mr Welton remarked.

“I am also surprised by a lack of determination to find ways to make this happen.”

He conceded that the residual impact of the recession is that firms are now more cautious with their money, but also noted that a large number of these companies find it hard to look beyond the issue of funding.

“Some SMEs may fear that they can’t raise funding because they read in the press that access to funding is a major problem. So subsequently they feel they should wait until it is no longer a problem. It could be a long wait and of course the danger is that this becomes self-fulfilling.”

Last month, a report by BDO found that business optimism in the UK is higher than has been the case at any point over the last two decades.

BDO said that further growth will be seen in the next six months, which is likely to lead to another upturn in the economy.

An improving mood is sure to lead to a further fall in unemployment, BDO said.