November 13, 2012 04:18 ET

UK SMEs Looking to Drive Growth in 2013 Through Sales

LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM--(Marketwire - Nov. 13, 2012) - New British challenger bank, Aldermore Bank, has undertaken research showing that although the economy remains in a perilous position, SMEs are expecting growth during the year ahead due to more intensive sales and marketing activities.

The research was conducted in July 2012 and involved 300 SME firms across the UK and confirms that 86% of business owners feel the economy is either worse off or unchanged from 2011. Only 14% see any sign of improvement on the horizon.

However, despite this doom and gloom, 55% are expecting either a modest or significant upturn in turnover during the year ahead, driven by greater sales and marketing activity. Furthermore, 38% are anticipating business levels to remain the same, while only 7% anticipate a downturn during the next 12 months.

Group Managing Director of Commercial Finance at Aldermore, Ian Wilkins, said: "This research shows that despite the economy continuing to languish in the doldrums, owners of small and medium sized businesses remain optimistic about their future prospects. They are committing greater resources to sales and marketing activities to drum-up new business, with firms confirming they are recruiting specialist staff, investing in new market campaigns and exploring new market opportunities both in the UK and overseas."

Our experience at Aldermore is that business owners are battling on, but need the support of banks to help fund their future growth ambitions. Sadly, too many companies have found that the big banks are either unwilling to renew credit lines, or will only do so on more onerous terms.

"Aldermore is committed in helping SMEs realise their growth ambitions, by providing a range of specialist financial products and business finance solutions to help improve cashflow, with the purchase of essential equipment and with the acquisition of property."

About Aldermore

Aldermore is a new British bank and one of the best capitalised banks in the UK. With backing provided by AnaCap and Morgan Stanley Alternative Investment Partners, Morgan Stanley's Private Equity Fund of Funds business and new investment from the consortium of funds managed by Goldman Sachs Asset Management, Honeywell Capital Management and the Ohio Public Employees Retirement System, Aldermore raises deposits from consumers and lends to homeowners and small and medium sized businesses.

Aldermore does not depend on the wholesale, securitisation or international capital markets and has not been involved in any banking activities or the marketing of any exotic products which have been the cause of problems for so many financial institutions.

As a British bank, Aldermore is regulated by the Financial Services Authority and is registered under the Financial Services Compensation Scheme, which means customers' savings are protected up to the statutory limit of £85,000 per person. Aldermore is also a member of the Council of Mortgage Lenders.

Aldermore markets its lending products via professional financial advisers and specialist commercial finance brokers located throughout England and Wales.

About AnaCap Financial Partners

Established in 2005, AnaCap is Europe's largest specialist private equity investment advisor in the financial services sector. Based in London and investing across Europe, AnaCap advises funds with more than EUR1 billion under management. AnaCap's funds invest in businesses with high growth potential and strong management teams. AnaCap works with management teams to improve infrastructure and business processes. It employs sophisticated, twenty-first century technology to create low cost, scalable, sustainable and highly digital based platforms. AnaCap's day-to-day support allows management to pursue growth strategies in the most efficient and effective manner.

AnaCap's team of professionals also assists investee companies in assessing and reducing key credit and market risks. This expertise in risk and liability management is a key factor in the strong performance of AnaCap's portfolio.

The success of AnaCap's investment strategy and team has attracted investment from highly regarded global institutional investors including Goldman Sachs, Allianz, Morgan Stanley Alternative Investment Partners, Honeywell, State of New Jersey and Adams Street Partners.

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