Messages to the Chancellor from VC Backed Companies

At a recent event for our portfolio companies which provided a forum for discussion and sharing of experiences and best practice in the area of selling through resellers, and with a budget looming into view, we thought we’d take the opportunity to ask these businesses a simple question.

In The Upcoming Budget, What Could George Osborne Announce That Would Make A Difference To Your Business?

This was of interest to us because it gives us insight into what our portfolio companies see as their major challenges and potentially raises areas where we can help whilst potentially enabling us to help influence government policy on key issues through our membership of the BVCA. The answers, as you can imagine, were broad with lots of industry specific concerns, but there were a couple of areas which really stood out.

Simplify Rules For, and Incentivise Recruitment

It’s clear from talking to the companies we work with that employing good people is a key area. Small companies want to employ people and they want to grow. What is also clear is that they are put off by red tape which kicks in as the business grows. The message being, that if we want businesses to grow beyond small operations we need to find ways of helping them add to their workforce. A recent Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) survey found that 30% of business owners were put off recruiting by employment regulations; our small piece of research gave a higher figure.

Help Us Export

Many of the companies that Midven works with are creating exciting products with international reach, but they are looking for more help in accessing and selling to these markets. Much of the growth for businesses in this country increasingly needs to come from further afield, and the message from the companies we’re working with is help us to access overseas markets. There is existing help available from the UKTI in this area which is a good starting point although our companies feel the support needs to go further, potentially through specific lending pots for exporters to help them gear up in order to serve these markets effectively or by providing some forms of incentive for companies to export. There was certainly general agreement that for the UK economy to grow, selling across borders is vital.

Roger Wood