But while their numbers are high, head count tends to be low — most of those firms have fewer than 10 employees. And it was in this setting that two British entrepreneurs saw an opening in 2001.
Their company, the CFO Centre, offers access to 350 chief financial officers worldwide; billing SMEs on a daily rate. All told, they control $7 billion worth of revenue.
Their average CFO will spend three or four days a month with each of five clients. Those customers tend to be firms in the $2 million to $50 million annual turnover range — too big to be small, but too small to be big.
The group is pushing to expand in Asia, looking to build on its 62 current offices.
CNBC caught up with group's CEO, Sara Daw, as she passed through Singapore Tuesday on her way to China, Hong Kong and India.
"We're on their journey with them," she says of small business clients.
"We're getting them to 'big,' we're getting them to 'exit' and we will just scale up or down our involvement with those clients as and when they need it."
CFO Centre's model has expanded since inception to cover the rest of the C-Suite, including chief marketing, technology and HR officers.
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