Most (77%) commercial finance intermediaries believe that the number of loans they broker will increase, business loan provider Spotcap has found.
The research, conducting with support of the NACFB and FIBA, also revealed that more than half of commercial finance intermediaries believe loans will rise by a significant amount.
Graham Toy, chief executive of the NACFB, said: The research chimes with our own view of the commercial finance broker’s role in supporting and advising business borrowers.
“Brokers have a positive outlook partly because they remain instinctively agile, with many of them having weathered the unpredictability of a post-2008 world.”
Commercial finance intermediaries are divided on Brexit, with one four consider it a key challenge, while one fifth believe that it will bring new business opportunities.
Property, professional services, construction and manufacturing are perceived as the key industries for business growth
The number of documents required to process an application is viewed as a barrier. This is closely followed by generating new business and understanding the offering of different lenders.
Adam Tyler, the executive chairman at FIBA, the Financial Intermediary & Broker Association, added: “We benefit hugely from such a wide range of lenders and to know that SMEs are still not aware of the choice is very disappointing.
“My own research has revealed similar shortfalls and the more we can do collectively, the more small businesses can get the funding they require.”
Despite the healthy size of the SME loan market in the UK there is still a £22bn funding gap, with many businesses struggling to obtain capital for their needs according to the Bank of England.
This research comes after recent statistics from the British Business Bank highlighted the importance of commercial finance intermediaries, stating that businesses receiving external support when looking for funding are 25% more likely to become high-growth companies.
Niels Turfboer, managing director at Spotcap, commented: “Commercial finance intermediaries are an important part of the SME funding jigsaw.
“The survey insights show that there is a lot of potential for them to help fill the £22bn funding gap.
“The more adaptable and open-minded to change intermediaries – and lenders – are, the better and faster they can compete and grow their business.”