Start–up loans are in the news this week following the publication of a report by Lord Young entitled “Growing your Business”:-

A copy of the full report is available here and a copy of his previous report on start-ups, entitled “Make Business Your Business” and published in May last year, is available here.

The report contains several proposals such as recommending the creation of a “Growth Voucher” programme and removing the age limit on applicants (currently applicants have to be younger than 30) for accessing government backed start-up loans. The report also contains a “Summary of Help for Growing Small Businesses” which is essentially a list of links to useful websites in relation to funding, support organisations etc.

These recommendations come at the same time as the Start-Up Loans Company managed by James Caan (formerly of Dragon’s Den) has been criticised for “overly aggressive promotion of loan finance” to students:-

In this article, the chairman of Enterprise Educators UK (a body representing university staff that both teach and promote entrepreneurship) is quoted as saying that some of the scheme’s delivery partners “have in some cases not only misleadingly promoted loans but agreed loans with students that we would not have endorsed ourselves”.

It seems there is a balancing act to be made between encouraging new businesses with the help of start-up loans and aggressively promoting them.

Corporate and Commercial