‘Zombie businesses’ falling

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THE number of ‘zombie businesses’ in the south east has dropped dramatically, according to insolvency experts in Portsmouth.

A zombie businesses is one that is only able to pay the interest on its debts.

Numbers in the south east – which incorporates Portsmouth – have fallen from 17,000 in November 2012 to just 5,000 today, according to research by R3, the insolvency trade body.

Julie Palmer, council member of R3 and from Begbies Traynor Portsmouth, says: ‘While we have seen zombie business numbers fall and stabilise, there hasn’t been a corresponding rise in corporate insolvencies.

‘However, our research also shows thousands of businesses moving beyond “struggling but surviving” into potentially dangerous territory.’

Two per cent of firms in the south east are classed as zombie.