Half of all SMEs consider rating to be useful

Opinions on credit assessments which were introduced in the course of Basel II are divided among German small and medium-sized entities (SMEs). The »MIND – SMEs in Germany« study which is regularly conducted by the Deutsche Sparkassen- und Giroverband (DSGV) and the »impulse« business magazine revealed that fifty percent of the more than 500 company bosses questioned think that the new rating process had not been worthwhile. The other half, however, said that there have been benefits to their companies.

About two thirds (68.6%) of those who could benefit said that they now profited from better credit conditions and 56.8% hold the opinion that it was now easier to take out loans. 44.1% of company directors answered that financing had been optimised through Basel II and 26.5% believe that they could increase their profits. About one quarter (25.5%) of companies were able to increase efficiency. »Entrepreneurs who use the rating process for further development can achieve a competitive edge and improve future prospects for their companies«, said Mr. Heinrich Haasis who is chairman of the Deutsche Sparkassen- und Giroverband.

The MIND study which is representative of 1.275 million small and medium-sized German entities and 15.2 million employees also shows from the point of view of companies what banks particularly appreciated about the rating process. Most entrepreneurs (23.%) think that banks´ major interest was on the profit and loss account, 21.5% think collateral was most important and 20% said that the balance sheet is most important during the rating process.

Also interesting in this context is how relations between companies and their local banks have developed after the introduction of rating. About 40% of small and medium-sized entities say that the relation has improved to a large extent. 17% said that it had somewhat improved and about 44% said that it had remained unchanged.

The »MIND – SMEs in Germany« study has been carried out for eight years now in Germany. During this study companies from all lines of industry with an annual turnover of more than 100.000 Euros are questioned on a regular basis. GERMAN