Accountancy Blog

Exporting for small businesses

Selling goods and services overseas for beginners.

Internationalising your client base can be an intimidating prospect for small business owners with no experience in trading overseas.

Depending on your sector and your export destinations, deciding to sell products and services abroad can increase your expenditure, consume your time, and introduce new regulatory and administrative complexities.

Additionally, the decision taken by the British people to leave the EU has caused uncertainty for UK businesses trading in EU member states. It is understandable why an aspiring exporter might be slightly hesitant about committing to expand overseas. More…

R&D tax relief – what you need to know

A guide to the tax relief available to innovative SMEs.

Research and development (R&D) tax relief for small companies provides an enhanced deduction for the costs of qualifying R&D projects.


R&D tax relief for large companies is given as an expenditure credit in the company’s profit and loss account before the tax charge is deducted. This ‘above the line’ mechanism for providing R&D relief is not discussed further in this article, which is concerned only with the scheme for SMEs.   More…

Pensions and auto-enrolment

37% of small businesses are paying above the 1% legal minimum contribution to an employee’s workplace pension.

The People’s Pension survey of 898 business owners that have already passed their staging date found that the majority (70%) said auto-enrolment was beneficial to their staff. More…

Income and work

A quarter of employees have financial problems that are affecting their performance at work.

A CIPD survey of over 1,800 UK employees found that 31% of those aged 18-24 are facing financial concerns that they feel are negatively impacting their ability to do their job effectively.

20% of those earning £45,000 – £59,999 say that financial problems have affected their ability to work. This is more likely among women (28%) compared to men (23%). More…

Retirement income

Median income for retired households rose by 3.1% between 2014/15 and 2015/16, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS).

The latest disposable income and inequality statistics show that median income for retired households at the end of 2015/16 was £21,800. This is an increase of 13% (around £2,500) from 2007/08.

The median income for non-retired people decreased by 1.2% (around £300) in the same period. More…

SME borrowing update

SME borrowing is projected to rise 22% in 2017, according to Zurich.

The survey of 1,000 SME owners showed that firms are planning to borrow an average of £41,770.

This would see lending to SMEs rise to over £50 billion in 2017.

Anne Griffiths, head of SME proposition at Zurich, said:

“Borrowing can often be indicative of confidence, and increased investment in talent, equipment and business premises for growth may be one of the most encouraging indicators of all.” More…