View more on these topics

Govt set to launch £30m small firm mentoring scheme


The Government is set to launch a £30m mentoring programme for small firms to seek advice on how to grow their business.

The Government has agreed to introduce a number of recommendations put forward by the prime minister’s enterprise adviser Lord David Young in a report, Growing Your Business, published today.

Young recommends a £30m growth voucher scheme where firms would be given vouchers that could then be used to seek specialist help on expanding their workforce, marketing the business, financial management and growing online.

The report argues businesses that take external advice at key stages grow faster but few are doing it so the Government has agreed to spend £30m trialling a number of schemes over the next two years.

Former cabinet minister Lord Young also suggests expanding the Government’s start-up loan scheme to people of all ages.

Currently only people under 30 can access Government start-up loans, averaging £4,500, for business ideas to get off the ground. Since its launch last autumn, it has approved 3,768 loans worth around £16m.

The report also argues for 5 per cent of the Government’s budget for business schemes, such as enterprise investment schemes, to be spent on marketing. 

Lord Young says: “Growing our smallest businesses would transform our economy – they are the vital 95 per cent. 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 to raise the aspirations and confidence of these businesses and give them the tools to grow.”

Business minister Michael Fallon says: “We are supporting ambitious small firms to grow, create jobs and achieve their goals. Whether that is by providing access to mentoring and advice, cutting red tape or through successful schemes like start-up Loans.

“But we are determined to go further and faster: Lord Young’s important report sets out a series of practical steps that can make a real difference to entrepreneurs across the country.”


Comment of the week: No wonder it is so tough to make a profit

Comment on Money Marketing leader: Are the RDR pessimists winning out? The primary difficulty in putting together a charging structure that clients will accept is that our charges have to include all of the following that have little or no benefit to our clients:FCA feesFSCS leviesCompliance consultantsExcessive postage & printing costs cause by reams of […]

Pridham Report: Fund sales ‘disappointing’ in RDR aftermath

Fund inflows from retail investors were “disappointing” over the first quarter of the year although some asset managers were able to rack up healthy sales, according to the Pridham Report. IMA figures show the first three months of 2013 saw net retail sales amount to £2.7bn, the lowest level for five years, while Isas were […]


FCA: We are looking at whether RDR achieved its goals

Financial Conduct Authority director of supervision Clive Adamson says the regulator is looking at whether the RDR has been a success so far. Speaking at the Morningstar Investment Conference in London this morning, Adamson says the FCA is taking interest in how the industry has changed as result of the regulatory reforms. He said: “Firstly […]

Malcolm Kerr MM blog

Malcolm Kerr: The RDR 100 days on

As anticipated, most organisations were compliant with the statutory RDR requirements on day one and about 85% of advisors had gained the required qualifications and statements of professional practice. Clearly some intermediary firms have been selling fee based propositions for many years. But for life companies and intermediaries embarking on RDR transition we estimate that […]

Graphic content – December; the countries most exposed to a rise in protectionism

President-elect Trump has suggested withdrawing from the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) and ending negotiations over the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), albeit there is considerable uncertainty over what he will, or even can, do. If one of the main consequences of the election of Donald Trump is US protectionism, it’s worth considering who stands to […]


News and expert analysis straight to your inbox

Sign up


There are 8 comments at the moment, we would love to hear your opinion too.

  1. “If just half of the UK’s micro businesses took on an additional member of staff.”

    I will bow to lord young’s obvious success and experience in business, however most micro businesses are such because they are husband and wife enterprises that will never take on external staff.

    What, in my opinion needs to be done is an extension and bringing forward of the employer’s NI rebate. It has to be the most idiotic tax ever devised, taxing something that you want more of.

    I would say that that £30m would be better spent on that as well as extending the excellent SEIS allowance. Apart from themselves no-one will push young managers in the right direction more than engaged shareholders.

  2. Oh boy the usual suspects will be rubbing their hands. E&Y, PWC. Deloittes & KPMG will no doubt appoint a new graduate to advise the poor suckers. And £30 million should just about cover 10 firms at their charge out rate.
    What a great idea.

  3. Hi Hugh,

    I thought you might be interested to see this article.



  4. Why the obsession with small companies employing 1 here and 1 there.

    What we need are low taxes on wealth creation and employment, low energy costs, employment and business friendly regime that will attract large manufacturing companies and businesses employing 500+ people at a time!

  5. Greater help for small businesses would come from reducing the impact of employment legislation (currently 35 employment policies), tackling the claims culture that pervades everyday life, reducing Corporation Tax for small businesses ( to put them on a par with big business) and stop using businesses to do the social engineering that Government seem to want us to do all the time.
    The collective reduction in cost and more importantly time for entrepreneurs would far outweigh the benefits of consultants wanting a share of your business to provide limited advice.

  6. Julian Stevens 14th May 2013 at 5:46 pm

    If the government is concerned about helping small businesses, how about some measures to halt the destruction of small IFA business as a result of excessive regulation and entirely disproportionate regulatory levies?

    A good place to start would be to force the FCA to abide by the Statutory Code of Practice for Reulators instead of allowing it to continue ignoring it.

  7. Exactly Julian, and it would not cost them a penny.
    The money we pay in fees and levies could be better spent employing people.
    We can but dream.

  8. Lack of joined up thinking 16th May 2013 at 9:49 am

    “Growing our smallest businesses would transform our economy – they are the vital 95 per cent”
    If we as a small firm want to taken on say 2 extra IFAs plus 2 support staff, (assume total sals of say £100k) we would need to first come up with a spare £50k to cover the usual cashflow needed PLUS extra cap ad at min £25k.
    So for a small firm with profits already squeezed by regulation, levies and constant changes, thats a non starter.
    Its a stifling regime in which to trade and the people at the top are either really stupid or totally ignorant of the realities of this. Um, or both.

Leave a comment


Why register with Money Marketing ?

Providing trusted insight for professional advisers.  Since 1985 Money Marketing has helped promote and analyse the financial adviser community in the UK and continues to be the trusted industry brand for independent insight and advice.

News & analysis delivered directly to your inbox
Register today to receive our range of news alerts including daily and weekly briefings

Money Marketing Events
Be the first to hear about our industry leading conferences, awards, roundtables and more.

Research and insight
Take part in and see the results of Money Marketing's flagship investigations into industry trends.

Have your say
Only registered users can post comments. As the voice of the adviser community, our content generates robust debate. Sign up today and make your voice heard.

Register now

Having problems?

Contact us on +44 (0)20 7292 3712

Lines are open Monday to Friday 9:00am -5.00pm