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Almost 90 per cent of UK start-ups are expecting to grow sales next year despite signs of business confidence weakening, according to research from the Government-backed Start Up Loans Company.
The organisation, which merged with the British Business Bank earlier this year, provides low-interest funding to new and established microbusinesses, polled 630 bosses at companies that have launched within the last 12 months.
Almost half (47 per cent) said they were forecasting double-digit growth over the next year, with a quarter expecting to increase sales by more than 25 per cent.
Tim Sawyer, CEO of the Government-backed Start Up Loans Company, said the research underlined the resilience of the start-up community and the importance of optimism for the UK’s hundreds of thousands of young companies.
He said: “It’s not surprising to see the business community at large pause for thought, given the political uncertainty of recent weeks, but our own research shows that founders of start-ups are a resilient breed and their own ambitions remain almost entirely unaffected.”
Sawyer added: “Of course there are challenges, but when you’re determined to start and grow a business, nothing stands in your way. What’s more, there’s help at hand, from mentoring schemes and business advice, to ensure start-ups get all the support they need to survive and thrive.
Since launching in 2012, Start Up Loans Company has helped over 47,000 businesses, providing more than £300m of funding. Some of its best-known success stories include international fashion label Tom Cridland, natural nut butter brand, Pip & Nut and soft drinks challenger Dalston Colas.
Duncan O’Brien, founder of Dalston Colas believes staying optimistic is the mind-set needed to help trade through those early years.
He said: “It’s natural to doubt yourself when the orders don’t come rushing in on day one, but you have to stay focused on your plan, and most importantly stay optimistic and keep moving forwards. If you’ve done your research and manage to create a great product – and deliver this with great customer service, then you stand every chance of success.”
The Start Up Loans Company provides loans of up to £25,000 at 6 per cent fixed per annum, as well as offering dedicated mentoring to each business it supports.