The latest statistics from Scotland’s Accountant in Bankruptcy (AiB) have revealed that corporate insolvencies increased from 846 in 2016-17 to 886 in 2017-18.

On a quarterly basis, the number of Scottish registered companies becoming insolvent or entering receivership increased in the fourth quarter of 2017-18, with 259 companies becoming insolvent compared with 155 in 2016-17 Q4. There were 119 members’ voluntary liquidations (solvent liquidations), the same as in 2016-17 Q4.

Commenting on the figures, Tim Cooper, Chair of R3 in Scotland, the insolvency and restructuring trade body, said:

“In many respects, this rise is not too surprising. Insolvencies of well-known companies have featured regularly on the newspaper front pages since the start of 2018, with further reports of firms scrambling to renegotiate rents and contracts with suppliers and landlords.

“Many companies are facing a complex trading environment. Staff costs are rising; there are concerns about the availability of staff after the UK leaves the EU next year; new technologies promise a productivity boost, but investing in as-yet unproven assets and software can be risky. There is also the prospect of at least one interest rate rise later this year.

“Any company director who is unsure as to the best way forward should consider taking advice from a professional source, whether or not their business is currently struggling, as the rate of change in the economic environment shows no sign of slowing down.”

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