07/04/2010 - 15:20

Call for alternative SME funding sources

07/04/2010 - 15:20

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The WA Small Enterprise Network is calling on the government for policies that encourage greater use of alternative funding sources as small businesses continue to face difficulties in accessing credit.

The WA Small Enterprise Network is calling on the government for policies that encourage greater use of alternative funding sources as small businesses continue to face difficulties in accessing credit.

The network, which represents more than 300 businesses in WA, made the call in a submission to the Senate Economics Committee Inquiry into Access of Small Business to Finance.

SEN said that it was concerned that high borrowing costs, along with lenders making it harder for small businesses to secure a loan, was restricting the ability of businesses in WA to take advantage of improving economic conditions.

The concerns were proven in a recent Chamber of Commerce and Industry WA survey of business expectations which showed that more than a quarter of respondents rated borrowing costs as one of the top three issues affecting them.

"SEN considers that government should establish policies that encourage greater use of alternative funding sources beyond traditional bank lending," it said.

"For instance, policies that encourage venture capitalism, angel funding, and philanthropy should be considered.

"Stimulating investment from alternative sources should establish greater competitive tension for funding in the market, build new investment and income streams for potential investors, and provide new avenues for small businesses to pursue in terms of gaining access to capital, both for long-term and short-term purposes."

The Small Enterprise Network was established by CCIWA earlier this year to assist small business owners.

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