UK Finance launches campaign in bid to help SMEs prepare for Brexit

UK Finance announced a national campaign encouraging small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to prepare for the potential changes and opportunities brought about by the UK’s departure from the EU.

The “Let’s Talk Business” campaign, supported by key business organisations including the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB), British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) and the Confederation of British Industry (CBI), calls on those firms who have not yet done so to consider the implications for their business.

The campaign encourages businesses to consider to make the most of growth and capitalise on the opportunities ahead. An online guide is being launched to offer a ‘one stop shop’ to help SMEs prepare, containing extensive guidance, contact points and details of the various support schemes and resources available.

Experts within the campaign warn of 200,000 exporters risk being locked out of the EU as businesses attempting to do ‘no deal’ paperwork.

The campaign highlights that banks retain the capacity and obligation to support SMEs, encouraging businesses across the UK to speak to their finance provider early to discuss any possible funding requirements.

Even those businesses which don’t export or import directly should consider how they could be impacted, for example if their customers and suppliers are affected by changes to current trading arrangements.

UK Finance and the business groups will also meet regularly to discuss how best to provide ongoing support and guidance to SMEs The online guide will be updated on an ongoing basis and promoted to SMEs across the country by UK Finance and the business groups involved, as well as through a regional roadshow over the coming months.

Stephen Jones, Chief Executive of UK Finance, said: With just five weeks to go until the UK’s exit from the EU, we are encouraging businesses who haven’t yet done so to think about how they might be impacted. The banking and finance industry has the capacity to support viable businesses whatever the outcome.

“The Let’s Talk Business campaign, supported by leading business groups, will provide extensive guidance to help SMEs prepare for the changes ahead and consider any financing needs. Any business customers who may have additional financing requirements should begin engaging with their provider now, as the earlier they do so the easier it will be.”