MORE than two-fifths of small and medium businesses in Ireland aren't getting paid on time, a survey has found.
As many as 20pc of firms claim that the problem is worse now than it was a year ago.
The findings come from the latest Close Brothers Business Barometer, a quarterly survey that canvasses the opinion of SME owners and managers from a range of sectors across the UK and Ireland.
The survey also found that public sector companies are the most likely to make late payments.
InVivo, the largest agricultural co-operative group in France, and a leading player in the industry globally, has formally signed an agreement to acquire a 50pc stake in Life Scientific, an Irish R&D company which specialises in off-patent crop protection products.
The formal signing ceremony took place at an event organised by the Irish Embassy in Paris to mark St. Patrick's Day.
Creative media education provider Pulse College, which sits within Windmill Lane Studios, is seeking a €60,000 loan on the online peer-to-peer website Linked Finance to expand.
Pulse College intends to use the loan to invest in cutting-edge film and gaming equipment and facilities for its students.
Greece has repaid a loan to the IMF, further depleting cash reserves that risk running out this month unless a deal is reached with European partners.
Greece made the payment as scheduled. The country was due to pay back about €584m. The nation's central bank also said that its primary budget surplus narrowed to €503m in the first two months of the year, less than a third of the amount in the year-earlier period.
ECB bond buying
The European Central Bank (ECB) embarked on a new monetary-policy era by settling purchases of €9.75bn of public-sector debt last week.
The ECB announced on Twitter its first weekly statement showing buying of government and agency debt by the region's central banks, part of a stimulus plan to acquire €1.1 trillion of assets between this month and September next year.