Enterprise Nation backs Commissioner's call for businesses to pay promptly

Enterprise Nation backs Commissioner's call for businesses to pay promptly
Emma Jones
Emma JonesFounderEnterprise Nation

Posted: Sun 15th Mar 2020

The Small Business Commissioner, Philip King, is calling on the UK's big businesses to speed up payments to their small business suppliers wherever they can.

The Commissioner has appealed to those in charge of supplier payroll to urgently consider accelerating invoice payments to the small business community.

The call has united all of the UK's business groups in the wake of the disruption caused by the coronavirus. It is backed by the British Chambers of Commerce, Enterprise Nation, Federation of Small Businesses, Institute of Directors, IPSE, ICAEW, and The Entrepreneurs Network.

"For small businesses, cashflow is the difference between survival and failure. Coronavirus has put unprecedented pressure on the UK's SMEs," said Philip. "When the cash runs out, businesses collapse.

"We want to urge all businesses to accelerate payments to small suppliers wherever they can. If the invoice is approved and ready for a future payment run, pay it now - rather than wait - and get money into the supplier's account.

"It may not have occurred to accounts departments to think in this way. But this simple solution is a powerful gesture complementing the support from government and banks. It will also have a more immediate impact and may remove the need to make loan arrangements that will inevitably take effort and time spent outside the core business - and then time to come through.

"We'd like to see large firms act on this message and pay small suppliers now."

Small Business Minister Paul Scully added: "The government is doing everything we can to support businesses through this turbulent time, from offering £2.2bn in grants and a refund for Statutory Sick Pay to our smallest firms. But it is vital that businesses also support one another and I would encourage them to heed this call and speed up payments wherever possible."

If you are suffering with late payment issues, contact the Office of the Small Business Commissioner. The office was established in 2017 to empower small businesses to resolve payment disputes with larger businesses.

Read more about the government support available to help small businesses cope with coronavirus.

Emma Jones
Emma JonesFounderEnterprise Nation
Following a degree in Law and Japanese, Emma joined international accounting firm Arthur Andersen, where she worked in London, Leeds and Manchester offices and set up the firm's Inward Investment practice that attracted overseas companies to locate in the UK. In 2000, bitten by the bug, Emma left the firm to start her first business, Techlocate. After 15 months, the company was successfully sold to Tenon plc. The experience of starting, growing and selling a business from a home base gave Emma the idea for Enterprise Nation which was launched in 2006 as the home business website. The company has since expanded to become a small business membership community of over 75,000 people who benefit from events and support: online and in person. Enterprise Nation also presents a campaigning voice to government and the media on behalf of its members. In 2021, Emma was awarded a CBE for services to small businesses and entrepreneurs.

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