Over 55% of UK businesses expect to grow their revenue by over half or more in the coming year, with another 19% expecting a minimum increase of over 20%, according to a new report from EY.
The EY Fast Growth Tracker interviewed 371 business owners about their fundraising and exit plans, and found that funding remains the biggest hurdle to British business success, with 50% of business owners agreeing it is the largest constraint on their growth.
Despite a majority of those surveyed completing a funding round in the past 12 months (61%), many found this process to be a distraction to their team (39%).
This has not stopped UK entrepreneurs from being hungry for capital, however.
72% want to raise up to £5 million in capital over the next year, with a further 17% looking for over £10 million in growth capital.
Alumni from EY’s Entrepreneur Of The Year programme, which is now open for nominations, took part in the survey.
2018 will mark the 20th Anniversary of the UK programme, which brings together fast-growth business leaders from across the UK, to network, share insights and celebrate the role they play in powering the UK economy.
Andrew Perkins, Senior Partner at EY in the South West and South Wales, said: “Entrepreneurs, with their innovative and optimistic outlook, will help to lead the way for UK business. In a rapidly changing world, where others see barriers, entrepreneurs will often see opportunity.
“Others businesses can learn a great deal from their ‘can-do’ attitude, passion and sense of purpose, which contributes to their fast-growth and ambitious plans for the future.”
Revenue growth ambitions
Tech entrepreneurs are the most ambitious when it comes to their growth, with 65% expecting to increase their revenues by over 50% or more in the next twelve months.
Business owners are not looking to UK-based venture capital to fund this growth either. A majority (62%) are targeting overseas investors, perhaps driven by the fact that 37% were unable to find suitable investors in their previous funding round.
Andrew Perkins continues: “Funding has historically been, and continues to be a hurdle to growth for the country’s entrepreneurial businesses. This research shows the clear disparity between matching ambitious enterprises with suitable investors, leading many to look overseas to find the growth capital they so desperately need.”
“To make our South West and Welsh start-ups a British business success, more domestic funding is needed. The UK is lagging behind in terms of opportunities for venture capital and other growth financing options, and more routes to funding need to be created to ensure that these bright, entrepreneurial businesses are not left behind.”