West Midlands' small firms the most confident in Britain

West Midlands' small firms the most confident in Britain

The West Midlands is home to some of the most confident and ambitious firms in the country according to new research from small business support group Enterprise Nation.

In the region 43% said they were more confident about the next six months than the last and 73% said they expected to expand.

Furthermore, 27% of firms in the West Midlands said they would be looking for investment over the next six months, with 49% having operated in profit in the last half of the year and 37% having broken even.

The poll asked the opinions of some of the smallest companies in the country, uncovering a steely confidence, despite some firms acknowledging that Brexit has had a negative impact.

However, 67% of businesses said they were planning to boost profits by introducing new products or services in the next six months.

While 43% said they were more confident about the next six months than previously, 19% said confidence remained the same.  Of those that were more confident, 25% put the increased optimism down to organic growth and another 25% said they were a stronger company.

The firms polled were typically trading for under six years, with more than a quarter trading between one and three years-85% said they were confident their business would still be around in 12 months time.

Exporting, however, still has room to grow across the West Midlands, with only 11% of firms polled already exporting, of which 24% used EU suppliers.

A further 10% revealed plans for international growth in the future.

Debbie Assinder, Enterprise Nation's West Midlands enterprise champion, said: "It’s great to see firms in the West Midlands reacting so positively to the challenges posed by political uncertainty.

"The smallest firms are unlike any other business community - and they remain the most optimistic despite the barrage of negativity they are constantly being exposed to.

"Firms at this stage can often pivot and adapt more quickly, as well as chase opportunity rather than being locked into contracts that begin to offer dwindling margins.

"While these firms might not have ambitions to become unicorns or gazelles, their contribution to the West Midlands economy in terms of revenue and employment cannot be dismissed."