Insurers are set to pay out over £30m to businesses owed money by collapsed construction giant Carillion.
However, the majority of Carillion's suppliers are likely to receive nothing back, as most did not have insurance policies against bad debts.
Carillion, which had a string of major profit warnings in 2017, went under last week with around £2bn worth of debt, and around 30,000 of its regular suppliers owed money.
Small business are owed an average of £141,000 on average by Carillion; medium sized firms are owed £236,000 on average while larger companies face an average shortfall of £15m.
The impact of Carillion collapse on suppliers could be devastating as Mark Shepherd at the Association of British Insurers (ABI) explained: " For all businesses, large or small, bad debt could easily put their day-to-day operations at risk, threatening the jobs of their employees.
He added: “One insolvency can risk a domino effect to hundreds of firms in the supply chain."
The association said that about £31m will be paid out for trade credit insurance, which covers firms against the risk of not being paid if a company that it does business with collapses.
Trade credit insurers paid £210m to businesses in 2016 for non-payment claims, the ABI said.