I’ve just been taking a look at the Financial Conduct Authority 2018/19 business plan, published today and, in particular, the bits about debt solutions. The numbers are interesting. So are the implications for the future of debt advice but that’s for another time. FCA say: “Financial Lives data suggest that 3% of UK adults used debt advice or debt…

Over the last few months I’ve spoken to many business owners. Time and again I’ve encountered in them a crippling dislike of calling clients and chasing for payment. They’ll email the reluctant payer until the cows come home yet do all they can to avoid picking up the phone and speaking to them! Which leads…

As bricks-and-mortar retailers continue to struggle, landlords have to brace themselves for more tough negotiations ahead. Even as spring shows signs of finally emerging, there are no green shoots of encouragement for landlords of retail premises. Poor profits reported by big name retailers indicate that rental negotiations will be difficult, with retailers pushing for substantial…

SMEs (Small or Micro Businesses) are particularly sensitive to both good and bad fortune – large profits can turn into losses very quickly when an unforeseen hurdle is hit. The majority of businesses can be saved by rigorous action as soon as directors realise that there is a problem, rather than burying their heads in…

The financial services industry has been a little behind the curve on automated speech recognition (ASR) technology. It’s not hard to see why. In the past few years, the fallout from the 2008 financial crisis, a swathe of new regulatory regimes, and other market issues have kept the sector busy. Few organisations have had the…

The SME market is booming. Initiatives like the Bank Referral Scheme and deals made last year between the government and some of the UK’s largest banks to ramp up support to SMEs mean they are finally, after being so neglected post-2008, getting the financial support they need to thrive. Because of this progression, the regulatory…

Underwriting a new Invoice finance deal is said to be the point of greatest risk for the lender. Saying “no” is easy but will not grow your business, and there will still be uncertainties no matter what analysis you have done. 1. Fine tune your decision chain – can a deal be done? Move from…

Yet again, the UK Government is looking into the issue of late payments. In this year’s Spring Statement, Philip Hammond, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, expressed his desire to investigate further how late payments can be eliminated. He announced a “Call for Evidence” into the issue. Influential trade bodies and small businesses welcomed the initiative…

Does your business charge late payment interest on overdue invoices? It’s one of many useful tools that businesses have in their fight against late payment, yet many fail to utilise it.  According to research from the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB), 84% of small businesses have been paid late for a product or service. Not only…

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