Manufacturers in Scotland see sales revenue plunge in 2021

Recovery from Covid-19 is proving long and painful for SME manufacturers in Scotland

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BUSINESS recovery from Covid-19 is proving long and painful for SME manufacturers in Scotland, who saw sales revenue plummet in 2021, new analysis reveals.

Average sales revenue dropped by 24 per cent compared to last year for firms across the country – and was the only area in the study that didn’t achieve growth. 

The UK saw a 24 per cent uplift in revenue, while Yorkshire and the Humber and the North East stormed ahead with 71 per cent and 64 per cent growth respectively, according to a new report.

Lockdown restrictions, supply chain disruption, lower business confidence and fears about tax hikes may have conspired to leave Scottish businesses in a worse position than last year. 

Unleashed Software, whose supply chain management platform supports more than 4,000 businesses globally, compiled the figures from a sample of 385 UK manufacturers. 

Analysts at the tech company, which is now part of The Access Group, collected 79,000 data points generated from firms’ day-to-day operations, including sales orders, EU exports and e-commerce activity. 

Stephen Jones, regional manager at Unleashed Software, said: 

“SMEs are the backbone of both the manufacturing industry and UK economy, so it’s disappointing that Scottish firms were not able to achieve the same rate of growth seen elsewhere. 

“We all hope the disruption of the past two years will subside, enabling businesses to get back on track again. It may be a slow road to recovery but with strategic investment and continued innovation, there’s no reason why Scottish manufacturers can’t close the gap.”

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