Some interesting numbers regarding Growth Vouchers

By Dan Wilson February 24, 2015 - 6:51 am

Last week we wrote about Growth Vouchers, a UK government scheme to provide SMEs with match funding for business development.

Subsequently Enterprise Nation (who are administering the idea and managing the expertise marketplace) sent over some numbers about Growth Vouchers and it does seem that there has been good success.

A total of 20200 applications have been received and 12856 “diagnostics” have been undertaken. That’s £19.2m that’s been pledged to SMEs and whilst that means that the whole pot hasn’t been dispersed it’s still more than small beer and better than a kick in the teeth.

The marketplace connects those seeking expert help with accredited experts. And it’s also worth noting that the marketplace is entirely funded by private sponsorship. You can read more about Growth Vouchers here.

Whilst Enterprise Nation’s claim that this scheme shows that the mental block on UK SMEs seeking and getting outside expert help has been broken is clearly overstated, it’s hard not to consider it a useful exercise and successful.

Some Tamebay readers have expressed their reservations but it seems to me that anyone thinking about business development within the purview of the Growth Voucher remit would do well to have a punt for a government contribution before applications close at the end of March.

  • Laura Mathieson
    3 years ago

    Any help towards the cost of business growth is welcome but where is the help for smaller businesses who want to expand? To get the growth voucher you must plan to spend £4000 minimum just on advice – any extra staff or equipment costs are not included. I can’t help but think that these businesses already have the resources to find their expansion and the money would be more usefully spent helping a micro business to take on their first employee or an eBay trader to take up premises because they have outgrown their spare room etc

    • 3 years ago

      how practical of you – and quite right too – in principle

      from (dim) memory the problem with straightforward handouts used to be the suspicion that the lolly headed for the local bmw dealer

      the new scheme assumes that there is practical expertise out there but that’s not what consultants are about

      our society has long had an inexhaustible supply of ‘expertise’ just as it has been (overall) a chronic economic failure

      and it has long paid many people to claim to be experts – generally those who couldn’t possibly take on risk themselves

  • 3 years ago

    it looks like yet another phoney government answer to problems that ‘consultants’ say are there

    the politicos can claim lack of take-up interest when the scheme fades away – or success if they are particularly desperate

    the consultants get the money (the prunes) and the sme and the taxpayers get bilked and their time wasted

  • 3 years ago

    4 grand is a lot to pay for just advice, trust me I give advice for a living! When you pay a consultant that amount of cash, I personally would expect more than just advice…more like getting their hands dirty & making their advice reality (which I personally enjoy far more as a consultant) Which means you are paying for a highly skilled worker rather than advice.

    • Jimbo
      3 years ago

      You could get a couple of hours with Rifkind.

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