Hiring staff, raising finance and managing people are all challenges stunting the growth of start-ups and dragging down UK productivity according to the British Business Bank.
They’ve published a report about the health of our country’s small businesses and their observations are less than encouraging for firms trying to enter the growth phase. In the report start-ups are hailed as the weak link in our economy. So much so that the Government have joined with successful entrepreneurs, corporations and universities to launch a help initiative, called Growth Builder, to offer more firms support in taking their business to the next level.
So what’s the problem?
Whilst there’s been a push to encourage entrepreneurship and start-ups there’s been a lack of support in helping them reach the next level and step into growth phase. This is what’s said to be having an adverse effect on productivity. Head of Businesscomparison.com, Philip Brennan says that one of the aspects holding back the growth of UK firms is finance,
“As the government’s recent investigation into banking identified there needs to be a more competitive marketplace for small businesses to access the vital funding that they need to grow and develop their enterprises. Taking on new clients and staff, moving to larger premises and updating equipment often all go hand in hand with growth. Businesses often fall short on lending from the banks which is why there needs to be more awareness of alternative forms of finance that can not only keep our small firms afloat but enable them to expand meaning increased productivity for our economy. Whilst this initiative is positive, only a very few small businesses will be eligible. A transparent and competitive financial marketplace would benefit all small businesses.”
The Growth Builder initiative will offer mentoring from Lastminute.com co-founder Brent Hoberman and Betfair co-founder Ed Wray as well as a 12 month programme of workshops offering advice on issues from managing cashflow to exporting and developing a HR department.
Are you eligible?
If your company is turning over more than £1.5million or employing 20 staff or more you are eligible to apply provided your sales are rising by more than 20 per cent a year.