The Atradius Payment Practices Barometer is an annual survey of business-to-business (B2B) payment practices in markets across the world. These are the 2023 survey findings for Eastern Europe.
The 2023 edition of the Atradius Payment Practices Barometer survey of companies in Eastern Europe is a snapshot of B2B payment practices taken in a very volatile economic environment. The survey was conducted between the end of Q1 and mid Q2 2023, therefore its findings should be viewed with this in mind.
The results of our survey provide us with the opportunity to hear directly from companies polled about what measures are undertaken to fund a sudden need for cash due to late or non-payment from B2B customers, and what credit management tools they use to mitigate the risk of long-term cash flow problems.
However, the survey also has a strong focus on the challenges and risks that companies polled believe they will encounter during the coming months, and their expectations for future business growth.
Topics covered include:
- the impact of late or non-payment on companies polled;
- the average time it takes to turn overdue B2B invoices into cash;
- how businesses manage payment default risks related to selling on credit to B2B customers;
- expected challenges and risks during the coming months.
Key takeaways from the survey in Eastern Europe
Our survey found a steady trend for B2B sales transacted on credit across the markets polled in Eastern Europe. These now average 45% of all B2B sales, and reveal a risk-averse approach to selling on credit in the current uncertain economic climate, with 55% of sales made on cash. Companies polled across Eastern Europe also adopted a more stringent payments policy. Payment terms granted to B2B customers now average 40 days from invoicing, down from 42 days last year.
During the past 12 months, late payments increased for companies polled in Eastern Europe, causing cash flow and liquidity worries. An average 7% increase in overdue B2B invoices was recorded in our survey, and these now affect 46% of the total value of B2B sales on credit. Various reasons were expressed for late payments. Cash flow issues signalled by long waits for payment were evident in 68% of companies polled across Eastern Europe telling us that Days-Sales-Outstanding (DSO) either worsened or did not change, from an already high figure, during the past year.
Our survey also found that the negative impact of continued high inflation on the business environment is the major concern expressed by companies polled across Eastern Europe for the year ahead. They are worried it will have long-lasting repercussions on industrial activity.
Cautious confidence was found about the outlook for demand among companies polled in Eastern Europe. 55% of businesses told us they anticipate a gradual recovery of demand amid signs of increased consumer confidence, which could lead to a return of sales growth during the coming months. Hungary. In contrast, far fewer businesses across the region are positive about the prospects for profit margins. Only 39% of companies polled expect an increase, while 61% anticipate either no change or a decrease.
Key survey findings by market
For a complete overview of the survey results for Eastern Europe, please download the full report available in the Related documents section below. The Statistical Appendix to the regional report is also available for download in the section below.
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