Over a third of South West pubs (33%) and restaurants (38.4%) are at heightened risk of insolvency in the next 12 months, according to research by R3, the insolvency trade body.

However, agricultural businesses in the South West have demonstrated increased strength since this time last year with 17% of business at risk, representing a 9.6% decrease in the proportion since February 2015.  

Alan Bennett, Chair of R3 in the South West and Partner at Ashfords LLP, comments:

“Hospitality and agriculture are two of the South West’s key sectors and these figures make for interesting reading. While the agricultural sector does come up against many challenges, not least the weather, pubs and restaurants depend heavily on customers’ disposable incomes. These figures may well reflect a post-Christmas and New Year hangover in customers’ spending habits.

“Many restaurants and pubs will be looking at alternative ways of drawing customers in between now and Easter by running special offers or showing key sporting events such as the Six Nations rugby tournament. But these businesses and every other sector should be mindful that things can change overnight so any struggling companies need to stay on top of their finances and be aware that seeking qualified advice early can make all the difference to their survival.” 

R3 uses research compiled from Bureau van Dijk’s ‘Fame’ database of company information to track the number of businesses in key regional sectors that have a heightened risk of entering insolvency in the next year.