Leaders in business and in the tech sector have welcomed the government’s new support measures for small innovative businesses.
Mike Cherry, the national chair of the Federation of Small Businesses, said that the scheme will be “a vital cashflow boost for many smaller businesses.” He said that it marked “an investment in key areas such as life sciences, artificial intelligence, big data, and clean energy.”
In his announcement, chancellor of the exchequer Rishi Sunak, said that startups would help to power the country’s growth after the pandemic crisis subsides. Business leaders have highlighted how vital the support scheme will be for startups in the tech sector.
Gerard Grech, the CEO of Tech Nation said that 33% of all European tech investment was in the UK in 2019. “At this moment of global crisis, the UK must ensure that the tech sector builds on the huge successes it has achieved over the past 10 years, and that it continues to deliver for the economy,” he said.
Tej Parikh, chief economist at the Institute of Directors said, “Our start-up community has been a driving force for the economy, and it’s vital they get the support they need. At such difficult times, the importance of innovation comes to the fore. When we emerge from this challenging time, we will need the UK’s entrepreneurial spirit to be stronger than ever.”
According to a survey by Tech London Advocates, over half of London-based tech businesses will be prioritising survival in the next three months. More than a quarter are looking to use government-backed loans.
Julian David, CEO of techUK said that his company “welcomes the support being made available today by Government. The businesses that will be supported by these schemes represent the innovative companies of tomorrow”. David said, “techUK will continue to work with Government to clarify how the schemes will work in practice to ensure the broadest range of companies can benefit from this lifeline.”
Brent Hoberman, co-founder and chairman of Founders Forum, Founders Factory, and firstminute capital said, “Entrepreneurs across the country will be delighted with the announcement that the Chancellor has launched this important source of support at this critical time.
“The capital being made available under the Chancellor’s programme should also serve as a powerful catalyst to the unlocking of private support, which together, will provide essential funding to worthy early stage companies to help them get through the current crisis,” Hoberman added. “With the shot-in-the-arm now being provided by the Chancellor, the UK should remain the first choice for founders seeking to grow their technology companies in Europe.”