SMEs are the backbone of the British economy. There are over 5 million of these ventures in the UK right now, and they are in great rip-roaring health. The banking big four handle the majority of SMEs funding needs. 85% of SMEs finance comes from them. That’s
a pretty huge stat, and shows the limitation of current choice for SMEs. So what are SMEs top three priorities for the next election?
Priority no 1 – the British Business Bank
The British Business Bank has made a few inroads in helping SMEs to get the right funding when they need it. Now it needs real teeth. It was given funds in the last government and has been arguably successful in fulfilling the government’s intention in supporting
SMEs. The next government should widen the Bank, and support SMEs by leveling the playfield across all crowdfunding platforms, not just the big ones.
Priority no 2 - the crowdISA
The P2P ISA, or crowdISA as we like call it, should be pushed through quickly. This will help protect investors and provide a further and potentially game-changing channel of finance to SMEs. As ISAs fall under the Financial Services Compensation Scheme
(FSCS) this is a great opportunity for investors savings to be protected within the crowdfunding realm.
Priority no 3 – tax reliefs
The next government must retain support for the Seed Enterprise Investment Scheme (SEIS), and Enterprise Investment Scheme (EIS). This has not just had a huge impact in helping crowdfunding gain traction, but also as a way for SMEs to gain funding. With
further support and potentially even widening of the scheme we will continue to see direct empowerment of investors and growth in the number of SMEs in Britain.
If the next government not only supports, but looks to widen these schemes, British SMEs can continue to drive the British economy ahead. With increasing awareness for alternative investments amongst investors, the government should increase at a macro level
the funding opportunities for SMEs. British SMEs are the lifeblood of the economy. Support here will create a true win-win for all investors, SMEs and ultimately politicians.