Post-Brexit shockwaves continue to reverberate around the UK market, and the economic path ahead remains fraught with uncertainty. However, amidst a perfect storm of capital outflows, damaged market confidence and record-low interest rates (now downgraded to 0.25%), there lies real opportunities for the beating heart of UK enterprise… SMEs.
The combined annual turnover of SMEs in 2015 was £1.8 trillion – almost half all private sector turnover in the UK – and total employment in SMEs was 15.6 million (60% of the UK private sector). Even in spite of Brexit, we believe UK small business is booming and a key driving force to stimulate investor demand and economic growth. However with the wave of uncertainty that has ensued and more caution sweeping the market, there is a greater need than ever for cash hungry businesses to seek alternative methods to engage customers and raise the financing they need. So we’ve designed a special ‘Brexit Protection Toolkit’, providing businesses with the necessary support and marketing to help navigate these choppy waters.
Despite the adverse effects post-referendum, there are still great positives for many of the UK’s SMEs. Life after Brexit means all of us in the alternative finance sector can export British business like never before, and as such a weakened sterling brings with it several advantages – for instance, increased opportunities to find international investors, due to the lower exchange rate. The foreign exchange swing also makes exports more competitive, resulting in a greater demand which opens up advantages for those businesses which can shift from selling to foreign market, mainly online where 3.2bn consumers can be accessed.
However, to capitalize on these tailwinds, the right support, resource and financing is key – and critical for small business. Our Brexit protection toolkit affords all the benefits of running a campaign on the platform, to offer businesses the best support and reassurance to keep afloat the market turbulence and stay on track to achieve long-term financial gains.
Transparent, flexible financing to suit your needs – Our ‘Revenue Loan’
By offering five types of finance, Crowd2Fund can help businesses to reach their goal even if their revenues are lower than normal. This presents a vital lifeline for businesses at a time when traditional revenue streams may be hamstrung, offset from lack of confidence or customer traction.
Our Revenue Loan product allows businesses in a slow month to pay less, meaning there are no early repayment fees. Through the Revenue Loan business owners have access to a viable alternative to easily and affordably bolster their bank account, thereby insuring the company against any potential slowdown in today’s economic environment. Having the resource and capital in place means your business can be well placed to attract the team of private investors you have open to you on the platform. With our Revenue Loan and Brexit Protection toolkit, we look to set in motion a virtuous cycle of stability and growth, to help each business achieve their short and long-term goals.
Build a team of private investors and get your working capital requirements – IF ISA
Additionally, as one of the few peer-to-peer lending platforms capable of offering the innovative IFISA product, businesses can borrow up to £1m whilst benefitting from the public’s existing trust in ISAs. With currently over £400 billion invested in ISAs in the UK, the IF ISA represents a substantial share of the UK investment market and allows Crowd2Fund to attract a large crowd of private investors – and we extend this value add on to the business which list on our platform. The IF ISA provides the opportunity for businesses to build a strong investor network, putting in place the foundations for further, longer-term financing. As well as setting up your company for growth, we want to help each business owner secure their future, whilst giving them both the autonomy and the network to do so themselves.
The ability to establish your very own investor network and to provide a reliable, effective source to service working capital requirements of businesses will put your business in a strong position despite the current market conditions.
People, people, people – win the right customers cost-effectively
As part of our toolkit, we are also offering a free brand video and bespoke marketing plan for every business which lists on the platform. It’s one thing to have access to investment; it’s another to have the right investor. The added plus we are working hard to equip businesses with is the ability to gain investment from the very people that will champion your brand, and to then have sufficient tools to market their offering to them. Your customers can become your investors and your investors your customers. Our toolkit is designed to help companies build brand loyalty at a time when it’s needed most. With the right people on board and, more importantly, with skin in the game, our toolkit can help businesses affront the challenges that lie ahead from a position of strength.
Irrespective of post-Brexit concerns, UK SMEs still remain the lifeblood of our economy and trade worldwide. The road ahead is paved with opportunities for small businesses and, with our toolkit, we can help to put business owners firmly in the driving seat.