Archive for March, 2012

Lack of Viable Plans Affects Business Loan Approvals

Research by business accounting firm, Sage has revealed that small firms’ failure to produce a business plan was a key factor affecting the number of bank loan applications that were rejected in the past year.

The research found that 42% of small business owners had no business plan in place, and just 10% had used one in a loan application. Sage claims that this hinders small firms’ chances of securing finance.

Clive Lewis of theInstitute of Chartered Accountants Englandand Wales (ICAEW) agreed: “It suggests a lack of good financial management. Without one, you’re unlikely to get your loan approved, especially if you’re talking about borrowing in excess of £25,000.”




Online traders Get Final Chance From HMRC

If you are in the e- commerce space read on.  If you haven’t paid your tax yet the HMRC is giving you a limited period of grace in which to disclose any unpaid tax at a lower penalty rate. 

You have until 14 June to notify HMRC, and until 14 September to give details of any tax owed and arrange to make a full payment, including any interest or penalties due.

Some online traders making a disclosure within this period will not face any penalty, and most will receive a penalty of no more than 10% of what they owe. Online sellers who fail to make a disclosure and are found to owe tax could receive penalties of up to 100% and even face criminal investigation

More information 


Government Boosts Business with SMEs

Government contracts with SMEs are set to double from £3 billion in 2010/11 to £6 billion in 2011/12, say the Cabinet Office.

The figures were revealed in a report on the progress made one year on from the Government’s pledge to help SMEs win more public sector contracts. The report said the Government has simplified and speeded up the procurement process and introduced greater transparency. In addition, some of the Government’s largest contractors have agreed to publish subcontracting opportunities on the Contracts Finder website.

Contracts Finder


Gloucestershire LEP Pilots New Retail Scheme

The Gloucestershire Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) will be the first to pilot a range of initiatives to boost the retail sector. The LEP, which is run by economic development firm GFirst, will develop and introduce a range of initiatives based on recommendations from both the Portas Review and the Government’s forthcoming Retail Growth Strategy. Business Minister Mark Prisk, speaking at the Retail Week Conference, has reaffirmed plans to cut red tape for high-street businesses and to develop a single consumer bill of rights.

Click here for more information

MGBA website



Government Funding Support for Welsh Micros

Plans for a £6 million loan fund for micro-firms in Wales have been unveiled by Welsh business minister Edwina Hart. The Micro-Business Loan fund was announced in response to a report published by the Micro-Business Task and Finish Group, which called on the Welsh Government to support growth and increase access to finance for Wales’ smallest firms. The minister said she anticipated that the fund would be operational early in the coming financial year, and would provide support to around 300 micro-firms.


More Information: Wales Online;


Most SMEs Applying For Bank Credit are Successful – Say Bankers

Eight in ten small and medium-sized firms that applied to their bank for credit over the past 12 months were successful, according to a recent report by the British Bankers Association (BBA).

The report also found that two thirds of small and medium-sized businesses will not be applying for credit over the next three months, with many put off doing so by the current economic climate. The BBA said the figures suggest that while banks are in a position to lend, the current economic climate means that demand for finance is low.

Sc: British Bankers Association

Horses and Water Comes To Mind

According to the FT Three Government schemes designed to encourage businesses to export have enjoyed only limited take up. Only 20 companies have taken advantage of the offer since they were launched last year. The contract bond support scheme has faired even worse having helped only 4 firms so far and the Government-backed short-term insurance product, only 11. Even more surprisingly the much vaunted Enterprise Finance Guarantee (EFG) scheme made just 5 loans. The support schemes were promoted at 150 events throughout the country but a surprised government spokesman said it could only help firms that wanted its support. MGBA believe that the distribution of these schemes has been poor and the bureaucracy around the application and delivery process difficult to say the least. However we believe these schemes are all well-intended and businesses should consider them carefully. Businesses requiring information on these schemes should contact me at


The Financial Times


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