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The Entrepreneurial Exchange

Scots 'Have Smarter Approach To Business'

Deloitte's annual Entrepreneurship UK report revealed a fifth of businesses do not expect to see any revenue growth in 2009. In the previous survey the figure was just seven per cent.

Many respondents also said the recession has exposed frailties in companies which had been difficult to rectify quickly.

However, Scots entrepreneurs were slightly more confident than the rest of the UK. Jim Boyle, partner in charge of Deloitte's Scottish entrepreneurial business team, said: "Over the last two years we have seen a number of entrepreneurial Scottish businesses continue their growth and acquisitions strategy, albeit in a more cautious and measured way.

"It is really encouraging to see so many Scottish businesses remaining so positive and confident about their long-term prospects, with 21 per cent of Scots partici-pantanticipating a 50 to 100 per cent growth rate in the next three years versus 14 per cent across the UK as a whole."

Strategic alliances and collaborations were also more popular in Scotland with 23 per cent of respondents looking to partnerships compared with 17 per cent in Britain.

Boyle said: "This is a very interesting response and shows that Scottish companies are taking a smart approach to growing their businesses. Alliances and collaborations can be an excellent way of improving access to expertise, funding and resources as well as building the chances of success whilst at the same time sharing the downside risks."

The report also found more than a quarter of Scottish businesses are making more use of mentors, non-executive directors and accountants than a year ago.

Boyle added: "This comes as no surprise.

For many years Scotland has had a culture that supports and nurtures entrepreneurs and innovation and there are a number of very well established and active networking and support organisations, not least the Entrepreneurial Exchange. Especially in these challenging times, the benefits of tapping into this experience and getting different perspectives can be invaluable."

John Anderson, chief executive of the Entrepreneurial Exchange in Scotland, said: "The findings of the Deloitte report confirm what we are seeing day to day amongst the members of the Entrepreneurial Exchange.

"We have the added benefit of being able to tap into the experience of our more seasoned members who have seen tough times before and thrived.

"These role models have been fantastically supportive in recent times and are happy to share their knowledge of what works and what does not with those who are facing these conditions for the first time.

"We have long had a culture of asking for help and advice and again this seems to be coming through strongly in the report. This augurs well for the ambitious entrepreneur in Scotland."

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