One third of small businesses turn to Bank of Mum and Dad

Family and specifically parents are the first port of call when a small business runs into trouble, according to a Liberis survey

One third of small businesses have turned to the Bank of Mum and Dad to help them get through the Covid crisis.

Faced with an emergency, more small business owners to turn to family ahead of banks for financial help. Forty-six per cent turn to family during the crisis compared to 40 per cent who turn to banks, according to a Liberis survey.

And over a third (35 per cent) said they turn to the Bank of Mum and Dad specifically, while one in five (19 per cent) said they turned to close friends.

>See also: Small businesses selling into EU face £180m in extra red tape costs

Four out of five small businesses have needed financial support during Covid – an estimated 4.9m of the country’s 6m SMEs — and over three quarters have sought commercial financing.

More than a third (37 per cent) of small business owners have taken on a second job to keep their businesses afloat, and more than a quarter (28 per cent) have considered doing this.

Going without food

Alarmingly, 6 per cent of SMEs surveyed said they were saving money on food, eating less and, occasionally, skipping meals to try and save money and keep their businesses afloat.

Cash flow remains the biggest challenge for SMEs, with 44 per cent saying this was a major difficulty ahead.

>See also: Some small business owners still haven’t received their Restart Grant

Liberis, the business finance platform, surveyed 500 SME owners in March for its survey.

Rob Straathof, CEO of Liberis, said: “There has already been record levels of lending to SMEs during the pandemic, with the British Business Bank finding almost half of the applied-for external financial support last year. While government-backed programmes provided a much-needed stopgap, many SMEs are still turning to family, friends and second jobs to get them through. With these schemes coming to an end and traditional banks expected to reduce SME financing, small business owners need more options.”

Further reading

Small business owners who duck out of repaying Covid debt face ban

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Tim Adler

Tim Adler is group editor of Small Business, Growth Business and Information Age. He is a former commissioning editor at the Daily Telegraph, who has written for the Financial Times, The Times and the...

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