Here Comes the Sun: BDC survey shows recession fails to dampen entrepreneur optimism - Credit remains tight for many businesses



    MONTREAL, June 29 /CNW Telbec/ - Entrepreneurs are more optimistic about
their business's prospects than they are about their industry or the economy
as a whole in the current recession, a Business Development Bank of Canada
(BDC) survey has found. The poll also found that tight credit conditions
remain a problem for a significant number of Canadian businesses.
    The BDC survey shows an impressive 86% of Canadian entrepreneurs were
very or somewhat optimistic about their company's growth potential. But they
were less upbeat when asked about the potential for growth elsewhere. Optimism
fell to 75% when the entrepreneurs were asked about their industry's potential
for growth and 60% for the economy as a whole.
    "Entrepreneurs see opportunities where others may see only difficulties,"
said Edmée Métivier, Executive Vice President, Financing and Consulting at
BDC. "The SME sector has always contributed the lion's share of economic
growth and, as a result, it will be pivotal to an economic recovery. More than
ever, lenders to the SME market need to bring a flexible approach to their
financing and investment decisions."

    Feeling the credit squeeze

    In other findings, entrepreneurs pointed to tightening credit as the No.
1 factor that may adversely affect business growth in the near future. Fully
70% of entrepreneurs identified tight credit as a negative for growth,
followed by the recession (65%), increased fuel costs (45%) and material
(40%).
    Conversely, entrepreneurs identified a strong, stable economy (59%), the
value of the Canadian dollar (41%) and a strong labour market (41%) as
positive factors for business growth in the near future.
    Two out of five entrepreneurs (39%) said they have experienced tight
credit. Nearly half of respondents had recently sought financing, with 34%
being successful and 40% failing. One quarter of entrepreneurs were still
awaiting a response to their request.
    The survey found 70% of entrepreneurs were seeking operating lines of
credit, followed by term loans (28%), business credit cards (22%) and
commercial mortgages (18%).

    BDC's ViewPoints panel

    Participants in the survey were members of the new BDC ViewPoints online
panel of professionals and entrepreneurs who are invited to participate in
surveys to make their views known on policies, products and services affecting
the commercial banking industry. Prospective new members of the ViewPoints
panel can apply through the BDC website at www.bdc.ca.
    A total of 231 entrepreneurs completed the online survey between May 6
and May 20. Results were weighted according to the size of the firm and region
in order to obtain results representative of Canadian small and medium-sized
businesses.
    <a href="http://www.bdc.ca/NR/rdonlyres/e7joisqk4wo3laep3g63yzowlzfyxcedkesnpjmi2tfssilczkakoemmzbfo47rxg5kfu2gd6nmc5zxfgy5fa54kbof/Activation+Study+Entrepreneurs_Final.pdf">Detailed survey results</a> are available online on BDC's website.

    About BDC

    BDC is Canada's business development bank. From 100 offices across the
country, BDC promotes entrepreneurship by providing highly tailored financing,
venture capital and consulting services to entrepreneurs.




For further information:

For further information: Johanne Bissonnette, Media Relations Manager,
BDC, (514) 283-7929, johanne.bissonnette@bdc.ca


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