Respondents to a recent C2FO survey cited economic instability and uncertainty about customer orders as their biggest challenges, likely fueled by the Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic and the 2020 economic crisis.
The survey found that the cost of borrowing in the last year due to the pandemic increased for 32% of respondents. This increase significantly impacted women-owned, with 43% of women-owned businesses noting an increase, while 24% of men-owned businesses noted an increase. Black-owned businesses were also impacted with 34% responding they experienced an increase in the cost of borrowing.
"While it's heartening that many SMBs in this survey have a positive outlook for their immediate future, it is also very clear that more needs to be done to provide these businesses with immediate access to the low-cost liquidity they need to grow," says Alexander "Sandy" Kemper, C2FO's founder and CEO. "These kinds of studies are important in calling out the economic challenges that businesses worldwide face every day."
- An average of 87% of respondents said they have enough liquidity for the next six months.
- Late or extended payment from customers is a growing global concern, as 37% of respondents said late payments from customers had increased in 2020.
- Despite the challenges of 2020, overall optimism among respondents about their future business prospects was fairly strong — averaging 6.5 on a scale of one to 10.