On 19 June in a room of the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Business programme alumni, Exchequer Secretary Robert Jenrick addressed the room, highlighting key topics surrounding UK SMEs
It was clear from his words, that he felt business outlook appears bright for UK SMEs, aided by the maintenance of tax efficient schemes. Jenrick’s speech highlighted the importance of SMEs in the UK’s economy and the government’s commitment to helping SMEs succeed. Exploring the importance of the entrepreneurial incentives provided by EIS and SEIS and the role entrepreneurs play in the future.
Find a summary of the key points he made in the speech below.
On creating a business
Jenrick commented that one of the most significant things a person could accomplish is to create a business. He noted that if you had been involved in building a business from scratch, you were certain to respect entrepreneurs. Explaining that “all our prosperity and our public services” relied on the risks they took and the wealth they created.
The importance of entrepreneurship
Jenrick said that it was important to foster a culture that encourages entrepreneurs and helps businesses grow and become successful.
He stated that “we have work to do” in this area but the UK has a resilient economy. He noted that the number of people employed was a record high while unemployment levels were near a record low. The UK has created more start-up companies than any other European nation and many growing into global brands, he said.
Jenrick noted that the government has committed to keeping a tax environment for the business community. Which, is highly competitive because businesses should be able to keep more of their earnings if they are going to be competitive internationally. Stating this is the reason the government reduced its corporate tax rate to 19%, one of the lowest rates for a highly developed economy.
Jenrick cited the above factors as the reason for maintaining the EIS and SEIS enterprise incentives. Noting that these incentives had a few critics. However, the government views the entrepreneurs who take advantage of these incentives as “doing public good”. They do this by creating job opportunities and introducing new ideas that “move society forward.”
Jenrick views entrepreneurs as seizing the opportunities associated with new technology and becoming the role models for an enterprise culture that values achieving success. He views failure as only postponing success and has confidence in the future.