SMEs lose £550 million a year in missing cheques

Adrian Doran
Adrian Doran
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Up to £550m is lost every year by SMEs forgetting to pay in or losing cheques written to their business, research by Barclays Business banking has found.

Of those that have lost or forgotten to deposit a cheque, two in five (38%) admit to doing it only on one occasion, however one in five (20%) say that they forget at least once a week and an additional 15% reckon this happens once a month, losing an average of £740.

This means that around 1million businesses are missing out on hard earned funds on a regular basis.

The average value of SME’s missing cheques is £740 but male owners confess to losing more than this - £925 on average.

This is £200 more than the national average and twice as much as the £417

“No business should miss out on their hard earned takings but the £550m lost each year by SMEs losing or forgetting to deposit their cheques highlights the scale of the problem,” said Adrian Doran, Barclays’ head of corporate banking in Northern Ireland.

“We want to take the hassle out of cheque depositing for busy business owners so they can pay in their cheque instantly through their smartphone or tablet.”

Barclays was the first UK bank to pilot mobile cheque imaging technology that enables customers to pay in Barclays’ cheques at any time and any place with just a few quick clicks.

The innovative scheme enables customers to upload and pay-in a Barclays cheque from their smartphones or tablets – making one of the world’s oldest forms of payment more compatible with the demands of modern life.

“We are keen that Northern Ireland consumers and businesses are able to access this new technology when it goes live across the UK.

“In particular, Northern Ireland has a large rural community and many people live some distance from a bank branch, so this new technology will really benefit them.”