Page 1 Page 2 Page 3 Page 4 Page 5 Page 6 Page 7 Page 8 Page 9 Page 10 Page 11 Page 12 Page 13 Page 14 Page 15 Page 16 Page 17 Page 18 Page 19 Page 20Pensions and Small Business – Ticking Time Bomb or Hidden Treasure? | 10 The pensions option W e have ascertained that many olderprenuers plan to use their business as their primary funding option into later life – seemingly with little other choice. Many would like to sell up down the line, and some have previously used funding to grow their business. So, could driving their business growth using funding from their pension pot be the way forward? Pensions freedom does not have to mean “buying a Lamborghini”, as then-pensions minister Steve Webb infamously suggested at its introduction in April 2015. The average SME director has £117,000 in accumulated pension pots (according to Clifton Asset Management’s own client base of 2,000 businesses), and while it can be argued that amount won’t necessarily provide financial comfort via an annuity, that pot can be leveraged. Yet few of the business owners questioned in either of our surveys would consider using their pension to fund their business. This is despite many having previously leveraged other funding to grow in the past. And evidently businesses that invest grow more quickly than those that fund themselves with cash. “There’s a perception of ‘irrelevance’ by pension-owning SMEs about their pension pots – but even though there’s not an adequate return from them for many, few are prepared to consider the risks and rewards of leveraging them,” suggests the Forum’s Ian Cass. “ There’s a perception of ‘irrelevance’ by pension- owning SMEs about their pension pots” IAN CASS, FORUM OF PRIVATE BUSINESS