Posted: Thursday, 14 September 2023 @ 10:08
We were chatting to someone the other day who was contemplating starting their own business. They had a good idea, they knew their industry, they knew their USP, but then came the common refrain: 'oh, but it's the wrong economy'.
It's easy to think that a booming economy is the time to start your own business. Banks are lending more readily and everyone seems to be riding a wave of success. However, more often than not it's these less favourable periods that see individuals forming their own organisations, and that's because these are the times in which opportunities arise for those who are looking out for them.
As a case in point, a lot of alternative lending businesses started in the wake of the last global financial crisis, including Rivers itself - so it's a space we have some familiarity with. Now, with hints that things are stabilising in the economy, it could be the sweet spot entrepreneurs have been waiting for.
An opportune moment
Looking at the practicalities of today, Leasing Life reported on ONS figures revealing a 15% drop in business insolvencies in the last 12 months, indicating the economy is turning in the right direction. Stats also showed that there's an ongoing decline in new business startups.
To us, that indicates a lack of competition, making it a good time to pursue or get behind well considered ideas with proper financial planning. Where many will see rising interest rates and uncertainties as off-putting, others will seek to find solutions like our fixed interest rate loans to get ahead.
An independent market
In a wider social context, buying habits indicate that consumers are increasingly keen to spend money with small, independent companies. At the end of 2022, The Independent wrote: "41% of shoppers buy more private labels than before the pandemic – and 77% of those intend to keep buying them." For smaller, consumer focused businesses (and perhaps B2B organisations as well), this offers something of an advantage.
What's happening on the ground?
From our own perspective, we're seeing a great appetite for business growth and development with requests for business loans at a record high from businesses set on not merely surviving, but thriving. We're also seeing the rapid development of our incubator block discounting service, which is growing above expected rates.
New businesses might have challenges in terms of establishing themselves and a customer base, but they also have the agility to meet market needs in a way that more established firms might not be able to.
Mostly however, whether you're starting or supporting a start-up or scale-up business, it might be easy to follow the crowd and assume that a challenging climate is the wrong time, but on the contrary, it's a time when there are opportunities to be grasped with both hands.
Find out more about Rivers business loans