SME owners not identifying as entrepreneurs

Small business owners are unlikely to consider themselves entrepreneurs according to the latest research.
Less than half of individuals questioned identified with the title ‘entrepreneur’ and a similar number rejected the label altogether.

The key findings from the research by AXA found differences between age, gender and region:
• 82% of small business owners under 24 claim to be entrepreneurs, compared with 32% of over 55s
• 52% of men see themselves as entrepreneurs but only 38% of women feel the same
• 60% of respondents in the north east identify as an entrepreneur, compared to 39% in the rest of England.

Darrell Sansom, managing director at AXA Business Insurance, commented on why small businesses don’t always identify themselves as entrepreneurs:

“I think it’s partly explained by the word ‘rich’, the idea an entrepreneur is someone who flies in from New York every day. It’s also this notion of being a ‘risk taker’ which is rather uncomfortable.

“Risk is a huge part of any business – just as much for a man in a van with a plastering business as for a tycoon. You’re not risking millions every day, but you’re still staking your financial future on your business and taking on legal liability on behalf of employees and customers.

“Whether you call yourself entrepreneur or not, getting the right protection in place – insurance, sound financial practice and securing your property (intellectual, digital and physical) is crucial to your survival.”

SFB specialise in helping SMEs grow and achieve their goals. Call us today on (024) 7638 4171 for a FREE consultation.

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Savings fell from spring to summer

Between spring and summer 2014 the amount people saved each month fell, both as a percentage of monthly income and in terms of value, according to National Savings and Investments (NS&I).

NS&I’s release quarterly surveys and the latest shows that the average person saved 7.63% of their monthly income in June, July and August – or £101.66. This is down from 8.21% (£105.43) in the previous quarter.

Other interesting findings from the survey:
• women saved almost £38 per month less than men
• people aged over 65 saved more than any other age group – £128.33 per month
• the 35-44 age group saved £14.16 less per month compared with the previous quarter
• 16% of people have no savings at all, rising to 24% among those aged 35-44
• a quarter of those in the north-east and Scotland have less than £1,000 in savings.


Piggy Bank with savings advice

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Coventry and Warwickshire figures show more shops have closed for good

Nearly as many stores have closed across Coventry and Warwickshire during the first 6 months of 2014 compared to the whole of 2013. However, big new names like Smyths were attracted to the city.

Figures released this week show Coventry has already lost 19 retailers, which is only three less than the total number of store closures last year.

Nuneaton have more shops in the first half of this year than the whole of the previous year, with the figure already reaching 15 compared to 12 during 2013.


Sadly, these latest findings do not include a number of high-profile store closures during August and September, including the national chain Phones 4u which caused the loss of 50 local jobs when all stores across Coventry city centre, Binley, Arena Park. Stratford, Leamington, Nuneaton and Rugby were closed.

In Coventry, the number of new shops opened in the first half of the year was 13 and only seven in Nuneaton, although some of the new openings have been big names.

In Rugby, the figures were level with the number of closures and new openings standing at eight this year compared to 16 losses and 12 gains during 2013.

Leamington is one of the region’s few high street winners with only two retailers lost from the town this year, compared to 27 last year.

The research has also revealed the biggest retailer losers are both men and women’s fashion shops, mobile phone retailers and video libraries.

But betting shops, coffee shops, discount stores, charity shops and American restaurants appear to be thriving.


Nuneaton also lost its Dorothy Perkins store in the town’s Market Place during the summer and 40 jobs were lost in Coventry when Homebase closed its big store in Walsgrave.

However, this year Coventry has welcomed new shops to the city, including sporting goods retailer which opened a new base at Cannon Park Shopping Centre creating 35 new jobs.

Smyths Toystore was another big new draw for the city, bringing 30 new jobs to the city when it opened at the Airport Retail Park, and the new Fargo village recently opened to much acclaim.


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Looking for a new challenge?

Are you an part qualified / qualified accountant looking for a new challenge?

      At SFB no two days are the same. Your role will be varied, and you will be given the opportunity to work with a wide variety of clients. You will have a minimum of 2 year’s experience of working in a practice environment, but be looking for something more than a traditional accountant’s role. You will want to make a difference and help your clients to prosper and grow. You will be part of a friendly, approachable team and will primarily be based at our Nuneaton office. However, there will be times when you will be required to work from our Coventry or Hinckley offices. As a part qualified / qualified accountant at SFB, you will be given opportunities you never thought were possible. This position is a Full Time role working 37.5 hours per week.

To apply for this role, please email your CV and cover letter for the attention of Shelley Harvey to

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Halloween is approaching!

Halloween - free image from iStock

SFB are celebrating with a games and treats afternoon on Friday 31st and we would love for you to join us!

Please visit either our Nuneaton office in Attleborough or our Hinckley office on Station Road for a slice of cake, sweets, an assortment of games (including apple bobbing!) and a charity raffle.

Businesses, family, friends – all are welcome to join us in the fun and help raise money for the Air Ambulance. We look forward to seeing you!

Halloween 2013 cropped





Halloween 11

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We are recruiting!

Job role: PA to Director & Tax Department Administrator

This is a newly created role suitable for someone with strong organisational skills who is a team player, enjoys a varied working day and is capable of working under their own initiative. Duties include the following:

- Organisation and management of directors diary including arranging and rescheduling appointments (internal and external customers) and management of email inbox
– Screening phone calls, enquiries and requests, and handling them when appropriate;
– General administration support to director including, typing letters, making phone calls to clients, booking meeting rooms etc.
– General administration support to tax department including typing letters and reports, processing new client memos, managing client records, billing clients
and electronic of filing completed tax returns – no tax experience is required as this is an administrative role and training will be provided as necessary here

Experience of working within a professional services firm would be an advantage. This is a full time role but flexible working options are available for the right candidate.

To apply for this role, please email your CV and cover letter to

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SFB are supporting organisation for women

The SFB Group has become sponsors of a ladies’ professional development organisation.

SFB are a bronze sponsor of LadiesFirst Professional Development, a support network aimed at businesswomen across the region.

Sponsors photo

The network was launched earlier this year by lifelong friends Lisa Kennedy and Julie Richardson to provide an all-inclusive platform for women’s professional development.

Cheryl Stanley, Marketing Manager at SFB, said: “Many of our clients are women running their own businesses and we admire Ladies First’s ethos around providing an inclusive and supportive network for Warwickshire businesswomen.”

Julie Richardson, Director of LadiesFirst said: “We are delighted to have secured the sponsorship from SFB who share our vision to support women in business. The sponsorship will help us to deliver a series of monthly events for our members attracting a high calibre of speaker.”

“Our mission is to make LadiesFirst events all-inclusive and meaningful. Our guests will be able to network and establish contacts with people who can make a difference to their businesses.”

The next LadiesFirst event, on Wednesday, 15th October, is headlined ‘Feel Good on the Inside, Look Great on the Outside.’ It takes place at Nailcote Hall, Berkswell and will include speeches by celebrity make-up artist Ariane Poole and nutritionist Sarah Grant.

For more information please contact:
Lisa Kennedy
07775 548426


Julie Richardson
07852 347833

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