2019 Business Predictions: James Pinchbeck, Marketing Partner, Streets Chartered Accountants

It’s that time of year, when Business Link Magazine invites readers to offer up their forecasts for the year ahead. It has become something of a tradition, given that we’ve been doing this for almost 35 years.

And, while none of us possess a crystal ball, it is uncanny how accurate some of these forecasts have been over the years.

Here we catch up with James Pinchbeck, Marketing Partner at Streets Chartered Accountants:

For me the 1st quarter of 2019 will not only set the scene for the UK for the whole year, but for decades to come. As we ended 2018 seemingly no nearer to getting a Brexit deal, the likelihood of a no deal seems increasingly inevitable.

Whatever the outcome, our relationship with Europe is bound to be strained. Business confidence seems to be waning too. Though we still see many businesses, despite uncertainty, making capital investments or looking at business improvements. The focus for many being to improve productivity, supply chain, enhance margins and increase capacity.

As we end 2018, we again received profit and sales warnings for high street retailers.  Looking to the year ahead no doubt we continue to see the demise of more not just of long established high street stores, but independents too.

Whilst seemingly we are not spending less, the way we buy and what we choose to spend our money on is changing. Certainly more of us are looking to spend money on more experiential leisure activity as opposed more material items.

In terms of Greater Lincolnshire, we have seen a real growth in new technology led businesses, with many young entrepreneurs opting for self employment as employment.  This is a trend we envisage continuing in 2019 as the growing cluster of tech entrepreneurs create a vibrant environment for them to start, sustain and grow.