News Article

Country Reports

UK Retailers among slowest payers in Europe

By CreditMan Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Research by Atradius, a global leader in credit insurance and collections, finds that companies in the UK retail sector pay more slowly than most of their counterparts across Europe.

According to Atradius’ annual Payment Practices Barometer, which analyses the payment behaviour of 1,200 businesses within sixteen sectors across Europe, UK-based retailers pay their invoices in 59 days on average. This compares to a European sector average of 57 days. Dutch retailers were found to be the fastest payers at 45 days and French firms the slowest at 89 days.

Shaun Purrington, Regional Director of Atradius UK and Ireland, commented:

“The fact that UK retailers pay more slowly than their European counterparts is disappointing news for domestic suppliers. The average length of time taken by retailers across Europe is also alarming when you consider that most companies expect to be paid within 30 days. Whether trading at home or abroad, it is important safeguard cash flow from late payment and default by knowing who you are trading with, agreeing credit terms up front and having strict collection procedures. By making use of credit information, credit insurance and international collections services, businesses can help protect themselves from the risks inherent in global trade.”

The full sector report of the Atradius Payment Practices Barometer is available free of charge at (publications). The document contains detailed information on payment practices in the sixteen most important European industries as well as country-specific analyses for Great Britain, Germany, France, Italy, Belgium and the Netherlands.