(PRWEB UK) 17 January 2013
The Business and Enterprise Minister, Michael Fallon, recently expressed that he was “going to war” over the issue of late payments after hearing complaints from small and medium-sized businesses. With many firms having to wait for payment long after their agreed terms, some up to 180 days, Mr Fallon wrote to all chief executives in the FTSE 350 in October, urging them to sign up to the Prompt Payment Code. Since October, 54 more companies have signed up, half of those from the FTSE 350. Next month the business minister will go ahead with his naming and shaming of those firms who are yet to become signatories.
There have been calls for the minister to include public sector organisations in this campaign, with Andrea Leadsom, the Conservative MP for South Northamptonshire, leading a campaign on late payments from public sector authorities, after a constituent reported that his small business waited seven months for the NHS to pay their £76,000 bill which had 30-day payment terms. The MP subsequently discovered that late payment is a nationwide problem that includes local authorities.
SmartDebit have a number of public sector clients who utilise the Direct Debit payment method instead of the more traditional and costly cash and cheque payment collections. A spokesperson from the firm said, “Small businesses are the lifeblood the British economy. Late payments are a real issue because they restricting cash flow, causing many companies to underperform and in some cases go out of business. In order to reduce the £36.6 bn owed to businesses in late payments, smaller firms should look at the available payment collection facilities on the market, such as Direct Debit. The number of business-to-business payment collection facilities that SmartDebit provide is increasing rapidly, as more and more business owners are becoming tired of the lack of control they have when chasing monies they are rightfully owed.”
SmartDebit are the UK’s leading Direct Debit Bureau, specialising in payment processing services since 1998. A Bacs approved Bureau, scoring ‘Excellent’ in all five categories of the Bacs audit, and ISO 27001 compliant. Providing a complete range of services: Outsourcing; SmartDebit-Admin cloud based portal; SmartDebit-Online payer sign up; SmartDebit-API integrated solution and SmartDebit-Contingency.