UK mid-market companies are close to matching the revenue growth of the German Mittelstand, according to GE Capital.
Despite the difficult economic conditions, UK mid-market firms have witnessed strong sales growth of £55.4 billion over the past year and created an estimated 67,000 new jobs as a result.
However, the growth in jobs is behind their German counterparts, with German mid-market firms creating 80,000 jobs last year.
Ilaria del Beato, chief executive of GE Capital UK, said the research shows that mid-market firms are the drivers of UK GDP and are absolutely essential to future economic prosperity.
She added: “Increased confidence is translating into investment decisions and will hopefully start to be matched by employment growth as well.”
The poll also found that 44% of UK mid-market firms believe remaining in the EU is vital for their business, compared to 58% in Germany, 63% in France and 67% in Italy.
Around 30% of UK mid-market firms believe the government has appropriate measures in place to support economic growth compared to 45% in Germany, 41% in France and 44% in Italy.
Professor Stephen Roper of Warwick Business School, who wrote the report, added that the UK mid-market appeared confident of future growth despite elements of the UK business ecosystem requiring further attention.
He explained: “A clear regional divide is evident as firms in the South are growing at a quicker rate than Northern counterparts. This needs to be addressed to enable the rebalancing potential of the mid-market to be achieved.”