Alternative finance knowledge gap exists for SME FDs


A new research piece launched today shows that Finance Directors lack confidence when it comes to accessing certain forms of funding, according to Tindall Perry.

These findings come despite a recent rise in awareness of alternative finance. Research from the independent senior recruitment specialist reveals that 74 per cent of Finance Directors at SMEs describe their knowledge of alternative finance as average or above. However, only a quarter of companies surveyed suggested that they were comfortable with accessing crowdfunding, with peer-to-peer lending also scoring less than 50 per cent.

In contrast, 85 per cent of companies said that they understood how best to access asset-based lending (ABL), while invoice finance, trade finance and venture capital all saw a positive response rate of between 55 and 75 per cent.

Despite this, traditional bank lending remained the funding of choice for financial directors, with 83 per cent suggesting that they would approach their bank for finance in the first instance.

Tindall Perry’s ‘View from the Top’ survey, comprising more than 200 SMEs, was developed to look at the access to business funding available to assist growth.

Leyla Tindall, Managing Director at Tindall Perry Partnership, said:

“In recent years, the benefits of alternative finance have become increasingly apparent to businesses across the country, particularly when helping our SMEs to unlock growth. However, in many instances there remains a disconnect between awareness and understanding. For most Finance Directors, that lack of understanding prevents them from accessing peer-to-peer and crowdfunding platforms, which could be having a detrimental effect on growth.

“Having the right management team and financial advice is crucial when it comes to accessing funding, as well as developing the best training plan to ensure knowledge gaps are plugged.”