UK government teams up with Enterprise Nation to deliver Growth Voucher initiatives

The Government has launched £30 million research to test what impact business advice has on SME business growth. The idea is a simple one: the government will dole out grants to business that want to expand. The programme will distribute subsidies of up to £2,000 to around 20,000 small businesses in England. They will then measure whether such investment makes a tangible difference to the businesses funded.

And Enterprise Nation will connect voucher recipients with an accredited service provider that they can work with. The companies receiving the grants will have to pony up a similar amount to match the government spend.

key areas of development the government is keen to support include financial management, recruitment, leadership skills, sales and marketing, and digital technology.

Aimed at businesses that have never sought business advice before, the programme is the largest business research project ever initiated by government and will gather comprehensive evidence on which to build future policy.

Emma Jones MBE, founder of Enterprise Nation and co-founder of national enterprise campaign StartUp Britain said: “This is an exciting initiative which could help accelerate the growth of thousands of small businesses at a critical stage of development – helping them to build long-term sustainability. At the moment, access to business advice is sporadic and highly variable with no means available to help businesses differentiate the good from bad. We want to address this by building a service that establishes suppliers’ credentials to offer advice from the outset and then continually seeks feedback on the quality of those services for everyone to see.”

The new marketplace was built without any public sector funding and will be free for small business to use. It has been paid for by private sector sponsors. It is also supported by professional bodies including the ACCA, ICAEW, BCS, CIPD, CMI and the CIM.

You can find out about Growth Vouchers here.

Check out the Enterprise Nation marketplace here.