Nearly 70 percent of finance directors anwering the latest FD Question on www.financialdirector.co.uk believe that Lord Young’s appointment as the coalition government’s enterprise tsar will see the flow of credit to SMEs improve.
In what could be viewed as a surprising vote of confidence, 67 percent say they believe Margaret Thatcher’s former secretary for trade and industry can improve credit supply to small businesses – a ringing endorsement of David Cameron’s choice to replace Alan Sugar.
But confidence wanes when FDs ponder his ability to grapple with other headline SME issues. While 22 percent of FDs think Lord Yong can minimise regulatory red tape – the barriers to business growth and the key issue on which his appointment was made – just 11 percent see him being able to encourage more startup businesses into existence.
Equally worrying, he gets a vote of no confidence on the question of whether he can push the government to produce clearer guidance for SMEs, as they adjust to the age of austerity and respond to the challenge of picking up business where the public sector will retract.
The final results of the FD Question will be revealed in the December 2011 edition of Financial Director.