A third of Scottish small businesses make survival their six-month priority, as Meta offers free office space

Steve Hatch (Meta Northern Europe VP)

A QUARTER (25%) of small business decision makers in Scotland fear their business may close, while a third (33%) say a major business priority in the next six months is survival – according to new data. 

The research, conducted online by YouGov and commissioned by Meta, polled decision makers of Scottish companies with fewer than 50 employees. The findings cast stark light on the challenges facing firms as they seek to navigate the ongoing effects of the pandemic, soaring energy bills, rising interest rates and the cost-of-living crisis. 

A third (33%) of those polled worry their business won’t be able to keep up with their outgoings during the year ahead while almost one in five (18%) admit to using less energy to save on bills. Over a third (37%) say reducing costs would be crucial to their firm’s future success. 

With the cost of living expected to reach extraordinary heights this winter, Meta is launching “Space for Good Ideas,” offering small businesses in Scotland the opportunity to apply for free access to office space and ease the burden of their rising costs throughout some of the toughest months. Businesses of fewer than 50 employees can apply at fb.me/goodideasstudios by November 25th 2022. 

Meta has also teamed up with successful entrepreneur and CEO of sustainable activewear brand Tala and fitness brand Shreddy, Grace Beverley who will be participating in Meta’s Good Ideas Studio – a free event where local small business leaders can attend insightful panels, talks, workshops and trainings to help them grow their businesses, primarily online. The event will be held in Edinburgh at Dovecot Studios, Edinburgh, EH1 1LT 10-11 November.  

These initiatives are the latest in Meta’s long-held commitment to giving small businesses the tools they need to better connect with their audiences and drive growth. This year, the company has supported 960,000 UK small businesses with digital skills training as part of the Meta Boost programme. 

Despite the tough operating landscape faced, nearly a fifth (19%) of small businesses in the region have increased their staff’s salaries in the past six months. One in 20 (5%) have given their employees a one-off or regular bonus, with almost one in 20 (4%) giving pay advances or direct support with bills to staff. Meanwhile, almost a fifth (17%) say that having the office space/building costs of their business covered would see them employ more staff or give current workers a pay rise.  

Steve Hatch, VP Northern Europe, Meta, said: “Small businesses are the lifeblood of the UK economy and right now they face the challenge of a lifetime just to keep the lights on. We know there’s no one fix to the challenges faced, however we believe through helping both online and offline we can provide support to local businesses in need. This is why we’re offering small businesses in Scotland the opportunity to apply for free office space in a bid to ease costs.  

“We also look forward to welcoming many local small business leaders to our Good Ideas Studio to learn about the many ways to help their business grow and succeed.” 

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