Report Indicates Chancellor to Announce Multi-Billion Pound Fund to Fuel UK Scale-Ups

Chancellor of the Exchequer Philip Hammond’s Autumn budget will be revealed this week and there is plenty of chatter as to what may, or may not, be included in the important policy statement. With Brexit pressure compelling policy makers to do everything they can to support the UK economy and its entrepreneurial spirit, it is almost certain new policies will be included to incentivize risk taking and boost innovation.

 

During an announcement last week, Hammond revealed a dedicated new “GovTech Catalyst” team that will operate at the heart of government and oversee a new £20 million fund to help tech firms deliver innovative fixes to public sector challenges. Hammond stated, “Britain is a world leader in digital innovation with some of the brightest and best tech-firms operating in this country.” This comment is foreshadowing his speech at the House of Commons.

SkyNews reported on Saturday that Hammond will announce a “multi-billion pound support package aimed at transforming the prospects of some of Britain’s fastest-growing companies.” The rumor was said to be sourced from a confidential document that was part of the patient capital review. The idea is to provide access to capital to help fuel the next generation of UK unicorns.

Encouragingly, the recommendations include extending programs such as the Enterprise Investment Scheme, a tax exemption widely used by crowdfunding platforms. Perhaps there could be a “Growth EIS” created thus subsidizing innovation further.

Rhydian Lewis, the CEO and founder of RateSetter – a leading peer to peer lending platform, commented on the SkyNews report;

“I welcome reports that the Chancellor will implement recommendations on business growth from the likes of Neil Woodford – who is among RateSetter’s backers. The UK is a great place to set up a business, but scaling up is seriously tough.  It is long overdue that we address this and eliminate barriers to business growth which hold back productivity, jobs and delivery of more value to more people across the UK.”

 We will all know soon enough as the Autumn budget presentation takes place this Wednesday at 1230 PM.

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