Pitney Bowes Survey Reveals

Resiliency of Small Businesses Facing a Tough Economy

About half (52%) of small business owners would describe their business’ economic situation as worse now compared to 12 months ago, according to a previous survey by Pitney Bowes Inc. (NYSE: PBI). However, despite financial struggles, almost three quarters (73%) are optimistic about the future of their business. Such hopefulness will carry them through what some analysts are calling the “toughest economy in decades”.

The survey, commissioned by Pitney Bowes, was conducted by International Communications Research, which polled 504 small businesses across the U.S. about the financial state of their business.

The survey revealed that some of the top financial stressors for small business owners in today’s economy include: decreased sales (74%); health care costs (52%); late payments from customers (42%); and greater restrictions on financing (42%). About eight-in-ten small business owners say they are very worried about cash flow.

In spite of financial pressures, many small business owners still feel they have levers to pull before they would be forced to close. If their financial situation does not improve, 34% would resort to either layoffs or changing their mix of products or services, according to the survey. About a third would barter with customers, suppliers, and employees to minimize the use of cash, while 31% would reduce operating hours. Twenty-nine percent would purchase a technology to increase the efficiency of their business.

As many American entrepreneurs attempt to overcome financial challenges in a tough economy, their resiliency is undeniable. Not surprisingly, if forced to close, the survey revealed that more than a quarter (28%) would start a new business. About a third would either start a new career (34%) or retire (32%).

Pitney Bowes provides software, hardware and services that integrate physical and digital communications channels. Long known for making its customers more productive, Pitney Bowes is increasingly helping other companies grow their business. Visit www.pb.com


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