Longstanding challenges in SME access to finance, however, persist in many countries.
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Without finance, SMEs face challenges in starting and growing their businesses, going international, and seizing the opportunities of the digital revolution. It also supports governments to take actions on SME finance and is helping to strengthen the culture of evaluation of SME financing policies.
Our Scoreboard identifies several positive developments, but it also cautions that more effort is needed to diversify SME finance and address financing gaps for specific types of firms. In , bankruptcies fell in a majority of OECD countries for the fourth consecutive year.
In Australia, for instance, the bankruptcy rate fell by more than one third between and Over the same period, bankruptcies almost halved in Portugal.
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The number of bankruptcies in Japan has fallen for 6 consecutive years, and in reached their lowest level in 26 years. Non-performing loans are also lower than they were in the period following the financial crisis.
In countries as diverse as Estonia, Korea and the United States, SME non performing loans fell by more than half between and Survey data also point to more accommodating credit conditions, such as declining SME interest rates. Loan rejection rates are also falling in many countries.
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Despite this positive news however, important challenges continue to dog SMEs. The Scoreboard reveals that new lending to SMEs decreased in many countries in In the United Kingdom, for example, new lending fell by In the Netherlands, the drop was even more significant at This took place in a period of healthy economic growth and relatively loose credit conditions in both countries.
We need to understand better what drives the general trend of declining new loans, and to what extent it is a barrier to SME growth. For some countries, weak demand for credit, linked to sluggish investment, can explain the decline. In Italy, for example, weak credit demand reached a low in ; while in Greece, the drop in loans may be attributed to both risk aversion in the financial sector and very high levels of non-performing loans. In the face of these challenges, SMEs are increasingly turning to other types of financing.
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Volumes of asset-based financing, such as leasing and factoring, have been rising. In France, for example, in leasing and hire purchase volumes were up by a third compared to ; in China, they almost doubled over the same period. For the first time since the financial crisis, venture capital investments have also been rising in the majority of countries for which data are available.
In addition, financing through crowdfunding and other alternative online sources of finance continues to grow at an exponential rate. While volumes remain modest in most countries, online alternative finance has become an established feature of SME finance markets in countries such as the United Kingdom, the United States, and especially China, where more than USD billion was raised in Dynamic discounting offers a direct and mutually beneficial relationship that provides lower cost and consistent supplier funding.
In turn, dynamic discounting provides corporates with a short-term investing strategy with a no-risk return.
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For large corporates looking to improve supplier relationships and reduce supply chain risk, offering supplier-friendly accelerated payment terms is also an opportunity to boost profitability. Research reveals that strong supplier-buyer relationships are directly linked to increased profitability. Supplier trust is correlated with their pricing decisions, according to an article published in Supply Chain Management Review. Providing more funding options and improving relationships with China SMEs offers significant value for corporates, beyond improved margins and no-risk yield from C2FO.
China SMEs have a need, desire, and willingness to adopt dynamic discounting when that solution is part of a collaborative and mutually beneficial relationship. Each year, C2FO interviews SMEs globally to uncover current perceptions around working capital financing and the impact of political and economic factors on funding, growth and business relationships. Survey participants were asked a series of questions related to how they currently finance their growth, deploy capital and preferences related to working with their buyers, and their economic concerns.
Company size ranged from one to 10 employees to employees. Trade finance innovation positioned to fuel growth of China SMEs. Share on linkedin. Share on facebook. Share on twitter.
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Share on email. Share on print. Ninety-three percent of China SMEs are open to dynamic discounting China SMEs are open to dynamic discounting, a trade finance innovation that allows suppliers to offer a discount in exchange for early payment from their customers. About the Working Capital Outlook Survey Each year, C2FO interviews SMEs globally to uncover current perceptions around working capital financing and the impact of political and economic factors on funding, growth and business relationships.