Hitler once referred to the English as a “Nation of Shopkeepers”. We are in fact a nation of entrepreneurs and I think we will always be so. As young man I recall Margaret Thatcher introducing a scheme to help youngsters get into business by paying them I think £40 a week (long time ago when £40 was worth something) rather than “going on the dole”.
Essentially small business, start-ups need cash. The owners can’t live on fresh air and need all the financial help they can get and this shouldn’t mean a business loan guaranteed by the bank of Mum & Dad. Equally banks are businesses and start-ups are generally really high risk investments and not suited to traditional bank funding.
High Net Worth (HNW) investors have become the lifeblood of the start-up sector but only because of Government tax sheltering schemes like EIS (Enterprise Investment Scheme) that enable investors to enjoy tax breaks specifically for taking on high risk start up investments.
Today I read in the Sunday Times that the Government is clamping down on the use of EIS, when in fact they should be doing the opposite and bringing more schemes to HNW individuals to encourage more investment in entrepreneur Britain.
Apparently this has to do with some wealthy folk abusing the scheme. Perhaps the Government should deal harshly and publicly with any they find cheating these schemes rather than cutting off the lifeblood of the business future of the UK?