Gaining access to finance is one of the biggest hurdles any new business faces. It’s something confirmed by a recent survey from The Federation of Small business (FSB), which found 47 percent of businesses that made a loan application were turned down in the last three months. The FSB also found that only 37 percent of small businesses knew about alternative lending such as peer-to-peer platforms. What this highlights is that small businesses are still struggling to access capital and perhaps there is not enough awareness of the alternatives to bank funding.
To shed light on some of the key challenges growing businesses are facing in securing funding, we recently hosted a think tank called Finding The Finance at the Entrepreneur Country Forum: Palo Alto Goes Global event, bringing together entrepreneurs at different stages of growth, financial consultants and bank representatives. Moderated by Julie Meyer, serial entrepreneur and founder of Ariadne Capital and Entrepreneur Country, there were eight participants on the panel, including Jamie Conway, Founder of MadeTV, Hatty Fawcett Founder of Seek and Adore; David Hathiramani, A Suit that Fits; John Baldwin, Regional Director, Santander; Nick Watson, Partner, Grant Thornton, and Nick Gallop, EMEA Marketing Director, Dell Financial Services.
During the hour-long discussion, four main themes continued to emerge:
Following the Finding the Finance think tank, I attended the Entrepreneur Country Forum alongside 300 other entrepreneurs and business leaders. The theme of the Forum was all about taking business global, about moving out of the Silicon Valleys of this world and shining a spotlight on the budding entrepreneurial hubs around the world from South Africa to Turkey. It marked the official launch of Entrepreneur Country Global, which with a 46,000+ member base, aims to raise this number to one million in 25 territories by the end of 2014. We are supporters of Entrepreneur Country’s Global mission and doing whatever we can to help businesses thrive and scale has been a long-standing part of our ethos at Dell. Our new Dell Financial Services arm is a great example of this commitment as we now provide leasing options for growth-enabling technology.
It’s an exciting year for us and Entrepreneur Country and our partnership continues to deliver on the promise we have made to back entrepreneurs and accelerate their ambitions. Look out for more news from Dell about how we will accelerate our support for UK entrepreneurs during Global Entrepreneur Week from November 18th – 22nd.
Look out for a downloadable report on the Finding the Finance think tank coming soon. And if you missed the think tank, you can watch the video here.
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