Most SMEs Not Expecting Turnover Growth This Year

The majority of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in Singapore are expecting flatlining or falling revenue this year amid a lacklustre global economy. Also, 47 per cent of respondents do not expect turnover growth this year, up from 40 per cent last year.

The SME Development Survey by DP Information Group, released yesterday and into its 13th year, is sent out to about 10,000 firms, with an average response rate of about 30 per cent. This year, a record 2,847 SMEs took part.

Singapore Business Federation chief executive Ho Meng Kit said the findings are "not surprising" and show that "SMEs appear to be still treading water”.

He also noted a decline in the proportion of less established SMEs responding to the survey. He said the three- to 10-year period is a critical one for SMEs. While it might merely indicate fewer such SMEs responded, it could also be a sign that firms are not surviving past this growth stage.

On a brighter note, DP Information's Chief Operating Officer Lincoln Teo noted that 68 per cent of SMEs in the latest survey invested in technology and innovation, up from 64 per cent last year.

Spring Singapore Assistant Chief Executive Leung Wai Ling noted that among the two-thirds of firms hit by the tight labour market, 74 per cent said they have plans to raise salaries, improve productivity to remove low-value jobs, and enhance their human resource capabilities.

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Source: “Most SMEs in Singapore don't expect growth in revenue” (The Straits Times, 12 Nov 2015)

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