Clock ticking for UK enterprises

One in ten fear their business may not survive the next 12 months, according to Veritas research.

  • 2 months ago Posted in

One in ten fear their organisation is hanging by a thread, according to a survey by Veritas Technologies. With 2024 just around the corner, the research paints a bleak picture with 13% of those questioned doubting their company will survive the next 12 months.

Higher rates of inflation combined with consumers tightening their purse strings is creating major economic uncertainty for UK businesses. Two in five said that economic uncertainty is one of the greatest risks to their business. The upward trajectory in living costs has translated into higher operating expenses for businesses in the UK, making it increasingly difficult for them to maintain profitability and competitiveness.

There were 6,208 company insolvencies registered in the UK in Q3 2023, 10% higher than during the same quarter in the previous year, according to the UK government. The number of companies in the UK going bust this year is on track to be the highest since 2009. The UK economy flatlined between July and September 2023, narrowly avoiding a recession, while a recent OECD report forecasts a lower rate of growth than previously expected in the UK – just 0.7% next year.

But Veritas’ study found that it’s not just economic uncertainty that is making British businesses fearful for their survival. Executives and IT teams alike fear the heightened dangers of data security threats, such as ransomware and data loss/theft, with half (50%) saying these are some of the major risks they face. This was followed by threats associated with emerging technologies, such as AI (37%).

Barry Cashman regional vice president, UKI, at Veritas, said: “As we look ahead to 2024, the number of companies facing insolvency is approaching levels not seen since the depths of the 2008 financial crisis. 2023 has been characterised by a unique set of circumstances: almost unprecedented levels of economic uncertainty, the rise of AI, and cyberattacks such as ransomware hitting record levels.”

“Businesses across the board report that they are experiencing rising levels of risk in all areas. Most (70%) say they are facing increased data security threats compared to the last 12 months. To tackle these threats head-on, it’s imperative to have a full understanding of the possible risks being faced and build out a robust business resiliency plan to protect your business. Those that proactively prepare for external challenges will have the means to not only survive, but thrive in face of adversity,” added Cashman.  

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