Technology and retail firms in the East of England face above average risk of insolvency

Mark Upton, a partner at Ensors and eastern region chair of R3, the organisation for insolvency and

Mark Upton, a partner at Ensors and eastern region chair of R3, the organisation for insolvency and corporate recovery practitioners - Credit: Archant

Technology and IT businesses in the East of England are at greater risk of insolvency compared with their counterparts in most other regions, according a report from R3, the body for insolvency and restructuring professionals.

The research, compiled using Bureau Van Dijk’s Fame database, highlights that more than one in three local tech and IT operators (35%) are in heightened financial difficulty, a percentage exceeded only by the East Midlands.

The latest monthly statistics also reveal an uncertain outlook for some East of England retail businesses with around one in four of the region’s retailers (26%) having a higher than average risk of insolvency, second only to the South West.

However, however, agriculture businesses in the East are among the best financial performers in their sector. Fewer than one in six (15.7%) at an above average insolvency risk, a ratio bettered only by the East Midlands and four points below the UK average.

R3 Eastern chairman Mark Upton, a partner at Ensors Chartered Accountants, said: “These statistics paint a mixed picture for business recovery in the region. Despite reports of an economic upturn, not all companies are trading profitably, with many burdened by unmanageable debt.

“There are, of course, many local IT and technology firms which are trading successfully and are at the forefront of innovation, particularly at the heart of the Cambridge market.

“However, there are also companies whose struggles are invisible to outside eyes, and it is not until they are on the brink of insolvency that their owners seek financial advice. The fact is that the sooner a business seeks professional help, the more positive its outlook can be.”