UK200Group Home
Textsize: A A A

News that business support initiatives aren't helping SMEs

Social Share
Share this post on


Members of the UK200Group of independent accountancy and law firms have today commented on a report from the business department’s select committee, which said that most small business initiatives weren’t helping.

The committee said that the 600 taxpayer-funded support initiatives on offer to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) were “poorly communicated, confusing and not focused enough on business needs”.

They have called on the National Audit Office to carry out a further investigation into their effectiveness.


David Whiscombe, director of tax at UK200Group member firm BKL LLP, said:

Most of government has no experience of the real world of small business. And for avoidance of doubt, assisting fictitious Chinese companies at £8,000 a day does not for this purpose count as experience of running a small business. Of course support initiatives are too complex and inaccessible to be useful to small businesses. 

But of course everyone knows that they aren’t there to actually support small businesses – they’re there to give the impression that government is doing something to support them, which is a quite different objective and one which they perform quite well. The best thing that government can do to support small businesses is get out of the way and leave them to get on with it.


Jonathan Russell, partner at UK200Group member firm ReesRussell LLP, said:

No government has ever been able to offer support to small businesses but has time after time used good hard earned taxpayer’s money to pay political lip service to show how keen they are to help.

The best help would be to stop wasting tax payers money, by paying civil servants and consultants who have no understanding of what a small business even is and to leave small businesses to get on with what they do best.

Established in 1986, UK200Group is the leading mutual professional association in the UK with some 150 offices of quality-assured member accountancy and lawyer firms throughout the UK totalling over 550 partners, 150,000 business clients and global links in over 50 countries. UK200Group provide services and products that are designed to enhance the business performance of its members.  Telephone 01252 401050, email or visit 

Disclaimer: UK200Group is an association of separate and independently owned and managed accountancy firms and lawyer firms. UK200Group does not provide client services and it does not accept responsibility or liability for the acts or omissions of its members.  Likewise, the members of UK200Group are separate and independent legal entities, and as such each has no responsibility or liability for the acts or omissions of other members.



Back to News
Facebook Twitter LinkedIn YouTube