Surprise vote of confidence in Theresa May’s leadership

Economy & Politics | Surveys
Theresa May

70% of businesses believe that Theresa May’s government policy has been supportive of private enterprise, according to newly published data from the Dream Bigger: Funding ambition* report from Smith & Williamson, the financial and professional services firm.

As the outgoing Prime Minister spends her final week in charge of the country, the research reveals a third (33%) of businesses believe current government policy has been very supportive of private enterprise and almost two in five (37%) say it has been mostly supportive.

It is perhaps this belief that has led businesses to be optimistic about their future with four in five (82%) believing their prospects will improve. And, despite the continuing political uncertainty, three quarters (73%) of businesses have a greater appetite for borrowing than they did last year while for one in five (18%) the desire to fund new ventures, hires, or research remains broadly stable.

Notwithstanding this confident mood, when it comes to securing external finance many businesses are still falling short. Seven in ten (70%) of those that have attempted to raise capital have failed at least once, two in five (39%) have failed to secure funding more than three times and 9% have made five or more unsuccessful attempts.

John Morris, Partner at Smith & Williamson, said: “As the race for the Tory leadership edges towards the home straight, the candidates would do well to take a leaf out of Mrs May’s book when it comes to supporting private enterprise. In spite of many political twists and turns, she has, in the most part, kept businesses on side, with optimism and an appetite to grow.

“However, the hurdle comes when these businesses attempt to secure external finance. The reasons why companies fail in raising capital are numerous but entering multiple funding attempts can be expensive in many ways, nor least cost, time and resource. However, mistakes can be avoided by seeking specialist guidance from the outset, which can also improve the prospects of a firm securing the funding it needs, thereby reducing the failure rates we’re currently seeing.”

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