Cash handling costs UK businesses “nearly £18bn” a year

Security

by Jimmy Nicholls| 29 April 2014

Sage Pay CEO Simon Black predicts cashless society in a decade.

Accepting cash payments costs British business nearly £18bn a year, according to a report by Sage Pay.

The payments arm of the software company added that half the 1,000 businesses surveyed agreed that cash led to more accounting discrepancies than other payment types, while a fifth believed cheques were the most troubling, and 14% blamed credit and debit cards.

Chief executive Simon Black predicted that richer countries could become cashless by 2025, adding that "the smartphone will be the hub of everything".

A third of the businesses questioned in the survey conducted by Red Shift agreed with him, as did a similar proportion of more than 1,000 canvassed consumers.

The report also revealed that £12bn was lost as a result of retailers refusing to accept card as a method of payment.

Sage Pay found that four-fifths of businesses only implement new payment methods if asked to by their customers, an indication that firms are not taking the initiative when it comes to processing payment.

"UK SMBs are a driving force in the UK economy, but if they fail to innovate, they are in danger of being left behind," Black said. "Reducing friction should be the focus for every business."

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