New research from Aldermore bank shows small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are more confident in growing their business since lockdown restrictions have eased, as they reveal the amount they plan to invest in their business’ has risen 190% to £283,500, up from £97,719 in February.

Two out of five SMEs will spend on new equipment (44%) and new technology (42%) as they seek to be ‘digital-first’ following the pandemic A third of SMEs (36%) will invest in greener more sustainable activities

Tim Boag, Group Managing Director of Business Finance at Aldermore, said “Over the last year, businesses across the country have had to navigate uncharted waters, and as we emerge from the lockdown restrictions, we take invaluable learnings that will help move businesses forward to the next stage of growth. It’s encouraging to see SMEs committed to getting back on the front foot. Not only are they planning ahead to withstand future crises but they’re also prioritising investment and innovation to secure their futures.”

“At Aldermore, we’ve supported SMEs throughout the pandemic, we were an accredited lender under the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme and more recently the Recovery Loan Scheme. We remain committed to backing businesses to achieve their goals and ambitions and can offer a variety of funding solutions to meet their needs.”

Over the next 12 months two out of five SMEs plan to invest in new equipment (44%) and new technology (42%) as they seek to meet the digital expectations of their customers.. Evolving customer habits and the constraints of lockdown have all highlighted that an online presence is essential for the survival of businesses as over a third (38%) of SMEs now plan to invest in strengthening their business’ online presence.

Investing in greener and more sustainable activities is becoming increasingly important for a growing number of SMEs as over a third (36%) now plan to invest in this area, up from just one in ten (10%) six months ago.