The results of the latest SME Credit Demand Survey shows that 20% of small and medium sized businesses applied for bank credit between October 2020 and March 2021.
72% of SMEs reported that sufficient internal funds was the reason for not seeking credit.
The survey series is conducted by Behaviour and Attitudes, on behalf of the Department of Finance.
It is the most comprehensive survey of SME Credit Demand in Ireland, covering over 1,500 respondents through in-depth discussions.
Minister for Finance, Paschal Donohoe said the survey series is an invaluable resource that allows the Government to develop, refine and implement policy measures to support indigenous businesses and it allows the Department gain an essential understanding of the Irish SME environment
The results also revealed that 30% of SMEs reported increased turnover, 23% reported stable turnover and 47% reported a decline in turnover in 2020 versus 2019.
85% of businesses in the hotels and restaurant sector and 53% of construction firms reported a decline in turnover in 2020.
Results show a decline in the profits reported in March 2021 compared to those reported in March 2019.
Some 53% of all SMEs reported a profit in March 2021 (compared to 68% in March 2019). 19% reported a loss, with 24% breaking even.
The survey ensures that it captures a full picture of the SME landscape in Ireland, with micro enterprises, small-sized enterprises and medium-sized enterprises accurately represented as per the percentage make-up of SMEs in Ireland.
It found that six in ten of all SMEs in Ireland report having availed of the TWSS – a figure that rises to 72% of small businesses and 70% of medium-sized enterprises.
21% of SMEs reported having availed of tax warehousing.
80% of SMEs reported they are happy with their level of assets and investments, 10% were unhappy and 10% had no opinion either way.
40% of SMEs reported having no debt in 2020.
The survey is conducted biannually and historically for presentation purposes the report uses year-on-year comparisons. However, due to restrictions caused by Covid-19 just one survey was conducted in 2020.
For this survey wave data gathered for March 2019 was used for comparative purposes for some questions, while other questions were designed to gather data for comparison of a full year’s activity i.e. in respect of 2019 and 2020.
Minister Donohoe thanked the SMEs for taking part in the survey, especially at a time when they had such a significant demands on their time.