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Ireland SMEs – Basic Figures

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According to the statistics released by EU, the total share of Irish SMEs in all businesses is same as the EU average. It consists of very few micro enterprises. But the percentage of small enterprises present are twice as high as EU average and the share of medium-sized being significantly much higher.

Irish SMEs statistics:
The number of enterprises has grown remarkably by 18,000 (23 %), from 2002 to 2008, when compared to average EU-growth(13%). Employment growth in SMEs is also significantly higher than the EU average, reaching 21 %, matched the growth in the number of enterprises.

Of the total Irish SMEs, micro firms accounted for 82.8% in total enterprises, providing 20.9% of total employment of country. Small firms accounted for 14.1% in total enterprises, providing 24.6% employment. Medium-sized accounted for 2.7% in total enterprises, providing 23.0 % of employment.

The contribution of SMEs to total employment in Ireland (69 %) which is only slightly higher than the European average (67 %).

Based on the available figures, according to SBA principle, Ireland is positioned significantly above the EU-27 average. The main reasons for this achievement can be contributed to, online sales and purchasing activities and the share of SME staff with tertiary education, as they are supported by innovation-related indicators, such as the percentage of SMEs with innovation activities, the percentage of SMEs innovating in-house, the share of SMEs with income from new products or services and the share of SMEs turn-over from new products or services, all of which outperform the EU averages. The only indicator trailing the EU average in this category is the share of innovative SMEs cooperating with others in the total SME population, scoring 6 % versus 12 % EU average.

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Dec 27, 2010

US Small Business Facts of 2008: SBA

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Many of the nation wide new jobs are created by small businesses. They almost provide employment for about half of the nation’s private sector work force. They also provide half of the nations private real gross domestic product (GDP), nonfarm and also a significant share in innovations.
There was 1.1 percent increase in Real Gross Domestic Product this year. But during the fourth quarter, GDP was down 6.3 percent on annualized basis. There was modest growth in the first half of the year and there after, it saw sharp declines during the second half.

There was no hope in investment due to the significant declines in all the quarters except the third quarter. Small amount of decline was because of the real government consumption and gross investment. Real exports were down by 23.6 percent during the fourth quarter. There was instability in the financial markets.

There was a lot of struggle in small businesses because of downturn. There was a drop from 10.4 million in 2007 to 10.1 million in 2008 in average unincorporated self-employment. It was steady at 5.8 million on average during 2007 to 2008. The construction small firm industries lost 682,000 jobs in 2008.

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Nov 29, 2010

US Small Business After Crisis

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Small businesses in United States suffered a lot during 2007-2009 recession. As per a recent Deutsche Bank research survey, small businesses are showing an improvement in employment.

The key strengthening for the nascent US small business recovery is by improved sales outlook and access to financing. Small businesses have been slow in recovering because of deep losses in the most recent recession. First reason for this is that the construction sector which comprises of 86 percent of small firms was hard hit with recession and it has struggled a lot through out the downturn. The second reason is that the financial crisis. Due to recent recession, there were tighter terms of credit for loans to small businesses who relied more on traditional bank loans and other form of credit.

Uncertainty about the economy and lackluster sales are the main backlogs which are obstructing fast recovery of small businesses. According to a National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) report published in February 2010, about 51 percent of small employers are finding slow or declining sales as their principal immediate economic problem. About 22 percent of them cited uncertainty and about 8 percent cited access to credit. Just 40 percent of the small businesses are trying to borrow in 2009.

There was also a negative impact of falling real estate values on small business owners’ ability and capacity to borrow as about 95 percent of small businesses were owning real estate.

There was also a fall in lending to small businesses as a result of the financial crisis. As per Federal Reserve, the loans to small businesses decreased from nearly USD 700 billion in second quarter of 2008 to circa USD 660 billion in first quarter of 2010.

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Nov 25, 2010

Economy Recovery is Still Fragile for Small Firms to Hire New Staff: FSB

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The unemployment in UK as increased to 2.5 million. As per FSB Voice of Small Business Index, small firms are recovering but are not in a position to increase the staff.

According to a survey of 1,400 members of the Federation of Small Businesses, about 63 percent of small businesses expressed that they will keep employing new employees on hold till the next 3 months. This shows that the small firms are not yet ready to increase their staff members.

Small business firms are showing a steady growth as the economy is recovering. About 16 percent of small businesses are expecting their overall business performance to improve over the upcoming months.

Though the economy is recovering, still it is fragile. About 23 percent of the respondents are expecting that their business situation would worsen over the next quarter. About 2 in 5 small business firms are expecting no change in the performance of their business.

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Nov 4, 2010

Small Business Performance in the First Quarter of 2010

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In May 13 of 2010, the SBA released small business performance of First Quarter statistics. The small business trends are:

  • In the first quarter of 2010, real gross domestic product was 3.2 percent.
  • There was an increase of 14.8 percent on an annual basis in real gross private fixed investment.
  • There was an increase 3.6 percent and 5.8 percent in real personal consumption and real exports respectively.
  • The non-farm payroll increased by an overall 283,000 jobs which showed a positive sign of increase in hiring. Regardless, the unemployment remained high at 9.7 percent.
  • The self-employment growth was stable.
  • In the first quarter of 2010, except construction, financial activities and information other major industries experienced net job growth.
  • Because of the Federal Reserve Board maintaining their target federal funds rate nearly around zero percent, interest rates remained very low.
  • There was overall growth in economic trends in the first quarter when compared to 2009. Poor sales are of top concern of small business owners.
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Nov 2, 2010

UK Small Enterprises Save 67 Percent of Information in Mobile Brandband USB sticks: Analysys Manson Report

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As per a report published by Analysys Manson which examines the ways in which the small or medium sized enterprises can cut technology costs quickly, small enterprises employees should use mobile broadband USB sticks and data cards when traveling in order to save their businesses GBP2145 each year rather than relying on Wi-Fi hotspots. The report which was entitled small enterprises save money with mobile broadband which was published ahead of Mobile World Congress 2010, Barcelona, showed that each employee who keeps traveling throughout the year can save Wi-Fi hotspots charges till GBP700.

SMEs have a chance to choose the highly competitive offerings which may be with or without contracts from the providers like O2, BT, 3, Orange, Virgin, T-Mobile and Vodafone. More ubiquitous coverage and reliability is offered by the mobile broadband services when compared to Wi-Fi hotspots. Though the access speeds lag than those found at most hotspots.

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Nov 1, 2010

Small Businesses Spend Too Much on IT: A Survey by Brother

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As per a report commissioned by printer manufacturer Brother, small businesses are spending more than required on IT because of short-term thinking and also due to lack of computing knowledge.

As per the survey by Brother, small businesses are investing on cheap hardware for making short-term savings, but they had to pay higher costs in the long run. The small and medium sized enterprises are just thinking of the short term savings and are not concentrating on the money they have to spend later because of the low quality of the hardware. One of the other reason for purchasing low quality hardware is a false economy. The higher quality of the equipment could increase the productivity and ultimately the revenues. This is because of the tech journalists, bloggers and analysts who were the contributors for the report asserted. The larger corporations have IT directors who will be responsible for IT strategy. Only few small and medium sized businesses appoint a specialist.

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Oct 21, 2010

Low Consumer spending is the Top Concern of Small Businesses in UK

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According to a survey of businesses in UK, the biggest problem faced by small businesses is less customer spending. About 20 percent of the business owners who were polled by the Business Link for its Business Confidence Index mentioned that there was a fall in consumer spending and it is the major concern for the small businesses.

About 72 percent of the businesses are still feeling the effects of the downturn when compared to 63 percent past year which was when the country was technically in recession.

The entrepreneurs in London are primarily trying to decrease residual problems from the recession by refocusing on their core products and services or by cutting costs. There is a decrease in laying-off staff from 19 percent to 13 percent in the past 12 months. About 4 in 10 businesses believe that it is unnecessary to take some action to deal with the recession.

Filed under SMB's
Oct 21, 2010