Survey reveals key concerns

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A snap-survey of more than 200 Cornish business owners reveals some of the Duchy’s biggest issues – high-speed broadband, access to funding, and recruitment of displaced public sector employees.

Accountancy company Bishop Fleming carried out the survey at its recent funding seminar at Kingsley Village.

Among the findings, it discovered that while a majority (59%) declared that Cornwall is the best location for their business, a fifth admitted that they are keeping the potential for moving elsewhere under review, while a similar number confirmed that that their business is in Cornwall for the owners’ own reasons, and would probably do better elsewhere.

“Cornish businesses are hungry for a range of funding options in addition to those offered by their bank”

Asked about access to funding, 52% reported that it is moderately easy to get funding, but they also have to look beyond their bank for complementary or alternative sources of finance.

Ewan McClymont, head of Bishop Fleming‘s grant services and business development in Cornwall, commented: “The massive over-subscription for this event, and the responses to our survey, underline that Cornish businesses are hungry for a range of funding options in addition to those offered by their bank.”

Meanwhile, more than 40% of respondents to the survey said that they might recruit displaced public sector employees, but said that they would have to evaluate each individual on their appropriate skills. 21%, however, said that they have vacancies but are unlikely to fill them with former public-sector workers.

Attendees at the Bishop Fleming event were also invited to nominate the most important infrastructure improvement that would be of most benefit to their business in Cornwall.

The biggest number (38%) nominated high-speed broadband, with almost as many (31%) choosing road improvements, such as the completion of dual-carriageway for the A30. Only 17% identified an expansion of air services.

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