9 January 2023

SMEs forecast at least 10% growth in profits in 2023

Small businesses are forecasting increases in profits and revenue in 2023 despite the impending threat of a recession, according to research from HSBC UK1.

One in three (38%) business owners expect to see at least a 10% jump in profits this year, with professional services firms leading the way (67%).

Just under half (47%) of small business owners predict revenue to increase, with a third of those expecting it to grow by at least 20%.

Businesses acknowledged the impact of financial threats such as rising inflation (41%), followed by the decline in consumer spend (38%), rising energy costs (36%), wage inflation (22%) and cash flow management issues (19%).

However, over two thirds (76% ) of business owners said they had solutions in place to tackle these challenges. Nearly half (45%) plan to increase prices and one in five (23%) were reducing their energy consumption.

As a result, nearly two thirds (65%) said they were confident their business will survive.

Peter McIntyre, Head of Business Banking at HSBC UK, said: “Despite the challenges of a turbulent economic climate in 2022, small businesses are displaying strong signs of resilience and growth.

“HSBC UK remains committed to supporting customers with their growth plans as well as helping them to mitigate financial risk. A big part of that is providing the tools and information to help customers improve cash flow management, tackle supply chain issues and manage their overheads such as energy costs.”

HSBC UK offers a range of financial solutions to customers impacted by the rising cost of living, including:

  • Capital repayment holidays to free up cash within businesses
  • Reviewing overdrafts or trade loans to allow stock to be held for longer
  • Providing trade finance solutions to support customers with their supply chains
  • Extending bounceback loan (BBL) repayments through the pay as you grow scheme
  • Partial or total refinancing or restructuring of a facility
  • Extension of recovery/collection periods

HSBC UK’s research also found that one in four (26%) small business owners are reporting that cost of living pressures are causing a decline in their wellbeing. HSBC UK’s early warning signs team have been proactively contacting customers that could be entering into financial difficulty to discuss how they can help. So far, the majority of affected customers (68%) have avoided defaulting on payments for at least six months after being contacted by the bank.

For more information visit: Financial Worries & Wellbeing (hsbc.uk)

Media enquiries to:

Hannah Langston, Senior Media Relations Manager, Commecial Banking
07384 792 248, ukpressoffice@hsbc.co.uk

Note to editors:

1Survey conducted by YouGov on behalf of HSBC UK. Sample size was 604 owners of businesses with up to £5m turnover. Fieldwork was undertaken between 26 October - 7 November 2022. The survey was carried out online.

Cost of living support available to all HSBC UK customers:

  • Rising Cost of Living hub: providing information on why cost of living is happening, tips to help save on costs, and help on where to go for additional support for any customers who are struggling. Since launch, the hub has been visited by over 116,000 customers.
  • Free 1:1 financial health checks: customers and non-customers can book a call with a financial wellbeing consultant in order to receive information and support on managing finances. HSBC UK’s financial wellbeing consultants have also been working with businesses across the UK to deliver financial wellbeing sessions in professional settings to people at all stages of their career.
  • Free financial health webinars: offering practical support and guidance to customers around managing their money, including budgeting methods and top tips for saving money on energy bills. HSBC UK has delivered 920 financial health webinars so far to over 14,600 people (both customers and non-customers).


HSBC UK serves over 14.85 million customers across the UK, supported by 23,500 colleagues. HSBC UK offers a complete range of retail banking and wealth management to personal and private banking customers, as well as commercial banking for small to medium businesses and large corporates. HSBC UK Bank plc is a wholly owned subsidiary of HSBC Holdings plc.

HSBC Holdings plc, the parent company of HSBC, is headquartered in London. HSBC serves customers worldwide from offices in 63 countries and territories in its geographical regions: Europe, Asia, North America, Latin America, and Middle East and North Africa. With assets of $2,992bn at 30 September 2022, HSBC is one of the world’s largest banking and financial services organisations.