Denmark: poor payment practices cause liquidity stress

Barometer for betalingspraksis

  • Danmark
  • Automotive/Transport,
  • Elektronikk/IKT,
  • Maskiner/Ingeniør

24 november 2021

The results of this year's Payment Practices Barometer for Denmark point to industries wrestling with poor payments behaviour.


In many ways the results of this year’s Payment Practices Barometer survey in Denmark
reflect the uneven year experienced by businesses. The industries we polled, electronics/ICT, machines and transport, all reported high credit losses caused by payment defaults. Write-offs average 14% of the total value of their B2B sales. Perhaps because of this, the majority of the businesses we polled were fairly downbeat in their outlook. Encouragingly although take-up of credit insurance was fairly muted this year. Significant numbers of the businesses we polled told us they intend to use credit insurance next year. This is particularly encouraging as credit insurance can be an excellent driver of growth.

Key takeaways from the report

  • Based on responses from businesses polled across Denmark,  62% of the total value of the B2B invoices were reported overdue. This is a significant increase on last year’s 44%
  • 15% of overdue B2B invoices were reported to be more than 90 days past their due dates, with just 1% of these successfully collected and the remaining 14% of the total value of B2B invoices written off as uncollectable.
  • Perhaps in response to deteriorating levels of payments, many of the businesses we spoke to in the electronics / ICT, machines and transport industries reduced their use of
    trade credit. This plummeted to 44% of all B2B sales, down from last year's 60%.
  • 63% of the businesses polled in Deanmark told us they experienced deteriorating DSO and increased debt management costs ove the past year. Perhaps in a bid to improve the
    management of their accounts receivable, and also because they acknowledge its cost-effectiveness, many businesses told us they intend to take out a credit insurance policy next year.
  • Looking into 2022, although some businesses anticipate growth over the coming months, many noted the downside risks that remain. Half expressed concern over the health of the
    domestic economy and over the speed of recovery of certain industries that were hardest hit by the pandemic.
  • Reflecting on the impact of the pandemic on their business operations, 57% of the businesses we spoke to in Denmark said that following the outbreak of the pandemic, they had increased the use of e-commerce and 55% are now working with reshaped
    supply chains.

Interested in getting to know more?

The Payment Practices Barometer report for Denmark gives insights into B2B payment practices and businesses' approach to the management of customer credit risk in the following local industries:

  • Electronics/ICT
  • Machines
  • Transport

For a complete overview, please download the full country report available in the Related documents section below. The Statistical Appendix and regional Payment Practices Barometer survey results are also available free to download.

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