Liz Slee

Member Article

StartUp Britain response to Growing Business Report

In his second report to the Prime Minister Lord Young highlights the increasing importance that micro businesses have on the success of the economy.

Making up 95% of all businesses, he identifies in his report entitled ‘Growing Your Business’, steps the Government can take to help them develop their confidence and capability to grow.

Responding to the report, StartUp Britain co-founder Emma Jones said: “It’s clear we’ve reached a tipping point where starting a business has become an accepted career path. It’s what we’ve been working towards since this campaign started two years ago.

“What needs to happen now is an infrastructure change that will make growth and long-term development easier and more achievable for start-ups and micro businesses.

“Ideas like growth vouchers, growth loans, the Business Bank and removing some of the red tape surrounding Government and local authority procurement from SME should start to make a positive impact on British economy, helping to create the big businesses of tomorrow.”

Lord Young’s recommendations include:

  • Removing the age cap – currently set at 30 – for the Government’s Start-Up loan scheme.

  • Legislating to abolish pre-qualification questionnaires (PQQ) on contracts under €200k across the public sector, and setting “single market” principles which suppliers can expect when doing business with the public sector. This would help SMEs access the £230 billion per year that is spent on goods and services across the whole public sector

  • Launching a £30m Growth Voucher programme to encourage more small firms to get specialist help on: expanding their workforce; marketing a business; financial management and growing online. Businesses that use external advice at key stages in their development grow faster than those that do not - but too few are taking this up, Lord Young suggests.

  • A greater role for business schools in the local economy with the establishment of a new national “Supporting Small Business Charter” and accompanying award scheme to incentivise business schools to help SMEs grow. This will include advising small firms and increasing the flow of highly qualified students and graduates into SMEs.

  • Enabling the private sector to provide advice to SMEs on the Government’s website GOV.UK and releasing the online SME advice that the Government holds after the closure of the Business Link website to third party providers for them to rebuild and improve.

Lord Young said: “We have one of the best environments in the world for the creation of new firms. What this report endeavours to do is to help and encourage all those new firms to now take on their first employees and grow.

“Growing our smallest businesses would transform our economy. If just half of the UK’s micro businesses took on an additional member of staff, unemployment would be reduced to almost zero. We need raise the aspirations and confidence of these businesses and give them the tools to grow.”

This was posted in Bdaily's Members' News section by Liz Slee .

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