How, if at all, does financialisation affect small firms that have no direct exposure to capital markets? The paper argues the need to address this lacuna empirically, conceptually and politically. The paper then draws on research from a qualitative longitudinal analysis of UK small businesses in bio business and film and media sectors and identifies three potential conduits through which financialising principles and practices may be perceived, translated, and resisted for owners, managers and staff. More broadly, the article argues that financial relations should figure more prominently and move from their relatively marginal location into the heart of socio-economic analysis of small firms. As such, the research connects with and extends an important social science tradition of research on managerial control in small firms to include issues of financialisation and financial governance.