Startling figures released in Ireland this week revel that nearly 40,000 Irish businesses are at risk of collapse.

A survey carried out by state that one in every three businesses in the republic may go into liquidation in the coming years due to the recession.

36% of Irish companies have been classified as "high-risk" meaning each of them show signs of failure.

The study, carried out over 18 months, revels an additional 17% of companies are considered "medium-risk."

The survey also revels that companies already gone into liquidation in the country owe more than €1 billion in debt.

Managing director of vision-, Christine Cullen said: "Our findings show the stark reality of what is happening in the real economy. Our risk model is signalling that over 38,000 companies who appear to be normal are in fact in trouble. These companies are highly likely to be unable to meet their trading and financial commitments.

"The risk model also indicates that the number of companies going into liquidation rises sharply towards the final months of the year. 30% of company failures in both 2009 and 2008 occurred in the period October to December."

The survey shows a lot of the companies at the high-risk level deal in the hospitality and restaurant sector.

"Thousands of suppliers who are owed money by companies are now left battling it out at creditor meetings fighting for a share. If they are lucky, the likelihood is that they will only receive a small fraction of the money which is owed to them," said Cullen.

And newer companies are more at risk of collapsing than ones that have been around a long time.

On average, 185 companies each week are going into liquidation.

"Our message to businesses, particularly small and medium sized companies, is to stop and access risk before making a decision.

"This approach will help you identify the slow or bad payers, reduce the risk of bad debts and avoid the fall-out of liquidations," said Ms Cullen.