Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are hindered by a lack of finance, with 1 in 5 struggling to pursue business opportunities as a result, according to Aldermore’s SME Future Attitudes report.

The report surveyed over 1,000 senior business decision makers on their attitudes to business.

It found that 19% of the UK’s SMEs, approximately 1 million firms, missed out on at least one new business opportunity over the past year due to lack of finance.

Aldermore said that the average loss of income was £77,651 per business each year.

Medium-sized businesses with between 50 and 249 employees were the worst hit, with 32% reporting that lack of funding access has severely impacted them, for an average loss of potential income of £112,508 per organisation over the past year.

Aldermore found that traditional bank lending counted for 18% of finance to the surveyed businesses, while alternative finance, including asset and invoice finance, counted for 14% of lending.

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Carl D’Ammassa, group managing director, business finance at Aldermore said: “With more than two fifths of SMEs saying that their key business priority for 2017 is achieving business growth, it is frustrating to see that so many firms are missing out on business opportunities due to a lack of appropriate funding.

“As a lender focused on supporting SMEs of all shapes and sizes, we also want to educated businesses about other more bespoke, flexible and cost-efficient funding options available to them such as asset finance and invoice finance.”