Skip to content

Business & Economy

North East business owners’ optimism ‘at new high’, says Entrepreneurs’ Forum survey

Optimism among North East entrepreneurs has risen to a new high, according to fresh findings.

The latest Entrepreneurs’ Forum members quarterly pulse survey says business owners hold a “positive outlook” for the coming 12 months.

More than three quarters are expecting growth next year, with nearly half forecasting such progress to exceed 20 per cent.

However, the survey, which questioned 116 entrepreneurs – about 35 per cent of the Forum’s membership – also warned firms’ progress could be stymied by long-term difficulties around skills, salary demands and delays to sales conversions.

According to the study, 83 per cent of respondents are optimistic or very optimistic for the next 12 months, with the figure ten per cent better off than that recorded at the equivalent time last year.

Furthermore, 40 per cent plan to raise external investment, with 28 per cent intending to do so over the next 12 months.

And 58 per cent aim to recruit in the next year, with 24 per cent looking to increase overall headcount by more than 20 per cent.

Elaine Stroud, Entrepreneurs’ Forum chief executive [pictured, above], said: “These positive indicators of growth are good news for the North East economy.

“The results show not only the resilience of our members but also a deep sense of adaptability and forward-thinking among political and economic uncertainty.

“From emerging trends to common challenges, these insights are helping us collectively shape a brighter future for the North East and achieve our goal of making the region a great place to be an entrepreneur.”

The survey was conducted by Explain Market Research.