Critical Business Environment Factors for SMEs in the UK Chemical Distribution Industry: A Qualitative Perspective
The UK chemical distribution industry is a significant and well-established, yet fragmented and subject to strong consolidation, part of the chemical industry and a major contributor to the UK economy and employment. However, it remains largely unexplored, with limited research in the factors contributing to SMEs success. This paper, which is part of a larger-scale study, addresses a well-established gap in the UK chemical distribution industry and provides a qualitative perspective of the business environment factors critical to the success of small and medium-sized distributors. This research is based on the opinions of owners and very senior managers (Managing Directors, Directors, CEOs and CFO’s), an approach extensively used by other researchers. A total of 180 SMEs fulfilling the criteria of this study are identified with 118 owners/managers participating, generating a very satisfactory response rate of 65.5%. The paper informs key stakeholders and policy makers with a view to improve strategy formulation and decision-making process in supporting chemical distribution SMEs.
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