This morning (3 December), a new organisation called Independent Finance Providers Ireland (IFP Ireland) was launched, with it aiming to shake up SME funding for those not already part of the domestic banking industry.
At the launch, at the Enterprise Ireland offices in Dublin, IFP Ireland members and Minister of State Simon Harris were there to launch the new association, which represents a host of different banking companies providing leasing and finance, trade finance, invoice finance and lending.
Their reason for being, the new organisation says, is to offer a more expansive choice of funding where there is less reliance on single source finance from a limited number of providers.
The launch of the organisation also coincided with the release of its first report, which showed that more than one-third (37pc) of SMEs are seeking finance to employ more staff in the coming year, but almost half are experiencing problems accessing finance, with funding difficulties possibly stunting planned growth.
Similarly, more than half of those surveyed said Irish banks are ‘very cautious’ when it comes to lending, with 14pc of companies saying banks are not lending at all.
The survey, conducted among 600 SMEs, goes on to show that 72pc plan to apply for funding in the next 12 months but, of that number, only 27pc are geared up to finance the projected growth with their current funding facilities.
Commenting on the survey, chairperson of IFP Ireland John Power said: “These results show that companies in Ireland need a more expansive choice of funding where there is less reliance on single-source finance from a limited number of providers. Our members offer these broader finance options for companies, particularly SMEs, helping to bridge any funding gaps and fuel growth.”
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