Entrepreneurs are feeling positive that the New Year will bring in opportunities for their businesses, according to research released today.
In a survey of entrepreneurs, the Institute of Directors (IoD) found 83 per cent of young firms were optimistic about their prospects in the year ahead.
However, business owners were realistic about potential challenges in 2018, both in terms of government policy and wider economic conditions.
The biggest challenge to growth identified by the community was the UK’s uncertain relationship with the EU after Brexit.
However, domestic issues also posed problems for firms. IoD members said access to finance and a shortage of skilled workers were stalling growth. Business taxes, global economic conditions and new regulations were also cited as risks.
Stephen Martin, director general of the IoD, said: “Even in light of the uncertain political climate, our start-up founders are demonstrating that the British entrepreneurial spirit is alive and well...Whatever the long-term outcome, the next couple of years will be bumpy for businesses as politicians haggle over the Brexit deal, as we’ve seen this week.”
The research found start-ups had little awareness of schemes set up by the government to help them; just 17 per cent knew about the British Business Bank, which has been created to help small businesses access finance.