The Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak used his Autumn Budget to announce the launch of an investment fund targeting small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in the South West.
This fund is set to be worth a total of £200 million, and it is being described as part of the ‘levelling up’ plans to reduce regional disparities – particularly in regards to SME funding in this case. It will give smaller firms across the region cash that they can use for expansion and to enable them to provide more jobs for people following the Covid-19 pandemic.
The actual money is to come from the British Business Bank, and the policy has been introduced in the wake of the success of such regional funds in other parts of the country. An example of this is the Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Investment Fund (CIOSIF).
Having been introduced three years ago, this fund has provided access to business financing that the market was not delivering and has helped grow the economy of the area.
While it will be frustrating for smaller firms in regions like the North East that are not being provided with such a fund, accountants in Goole may be able to help them find the additional financing that they need.
The British Business Bank Chief Executive Catherine Lewis La Torre said that these business investment funds for specific regions of the UK were being concentrated in areas where smaller firms were finding it especially hard to get the funds necessary for expansion.