Experian said this made it one of the worst performing sectors within the UK, although the postal and telecommunications sector took the dubious honour of being the slowest sector to pay up during 2010, taking an average of 47.19 days during Q4 2010.
The property sector also struggled; like leisure and hotels, payment times averaged well over thirty days during the quarter.
Average UK payment time across business sectors improved in 2010, from 22.81 days in 2009 to 22.58 days.
Jason Mills, head of payment performance at Experian UK & Ireland, said: “Although overall payment performance improved slightly during 2010, the final few months of the year have highlighted that businesses still need to be cautious.
“The bad weather played a key role in this downward trend with many firms closing as employees struggled to get into their offices. A late payment from one small business can easily lead to a cashflow problem in another, particularly when their corporate relatives take even longer to pay.”
Chris Druce is a contributor to BigHospitality sister publication M&C Report.