Budget 2012 - Business reaction
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Following on from George Osborne's third Budget annoucement, GrowthBusiness finds out how business owners and advisers feel about the government's plans.
Stephen Herring, senior tax partner at BDO:
'Many of the chancellor’s Budget measures were leaked in the last week or two but there are some important new announcements embracing both increasing and decreasing taxation for individuals and businesses.'
Sophie Murra, manager of Sharemark:
'There have been many predictions about what George Osborne might do to help SMEs in his Budget today and some thought there would be much more to assist them. The government recognises SMEs need assistance and that previous initiatives are not sufficiently succeeding yet the support offered in today’s Budget was less than expected. Our interest lies in whether the National Loan Guarantee Scheme will be enough to help struggling SMEs in this difficult climate.'
James Caan, entrepreneur and former Dragons' Den panellist:
'For small, energetic companies to grow quickly and create new employment they need financing at competitive levels and the chancellor’s National Loan Guarantee Scheme is a significant move in the right direction.'
Bill Dodwell, head of tax policy at Deloitte:
'The chancellor has declared that Britain is back open for business. Today’s Budget is good news for the corporate sector, putting into place the final pieces of a favourable corporate tax regime.'
Ed Molyneux, CEO and co-founder of FreeAgent:
'As an entrepreneur, I would have liked to see the government drop the rate of capital gains tax for returns on employee share options. At the moment, company founders normally pay much less CGT (under Entrepreneurs’ Relief) while employees are subject to the full amount. This is unfair, especially for early employees who have taken significant risks and worked tirelessly to ensure the business is successful.'
Luke Lang, co-founder of Crowdcube:
'Today’s Budget shows that the government is listening to small businesses and trying to simplify tax and red tape as well as provide additional tax reliefs like the R&D tax credits. However, while start-ups have also been acknowledged by piloting the introduction of the new Enterprise Loans that will make it easier for young people to start their own business, older entrepreneurs are left out in the cold.'
Richard Mannion, national tax director at Smith & Williamson:
'Neon lights of a cut in corporation tax and top rate of income tax give the impression that the country is open for business; however, we would like to see the chancellor do more to help enterprise when he can.'
Mark Florman, chief executive of the BVCA:
'The measures announced today should make for a more entrepreneurial economy and for a stronger society. The BVCA welcomes the formula for fairness set out by the chancellor in his statement. The prospects for prosperity in Britain have been improved as a result of this Budget.'
Jeremy Waud, managing director at Incentive FM Group:
'This [National Loan Guarantee Scheme] completely misses the point - SMEs aren't too worried about interest payments - the key problem is actually getting a loan in the first place as banks want guarantees and are highly risk averse. The government would have been better to address the issue of security - thereby making banks more likely to give loans.'
Chris Arnold, founder of Camp Leaders and Smaller Earth:
'This new [Youth Enterprise Loan] announcement is fantastic news for young people, young innovators, young entrepreneurs. If they are not allowed the room to create then our evolution will slow. If a diverse merit based group are not given support for what may seem like unfeasible ventures our very survival will become less secure.'
Chris Sanger, head of tax policy at Ernst & Young:
'The surprise extra cut in the corporation tax rate will be welcomed by businesses but the big news remains the government’s focus on the international environment, which will encourage companies to locate, invest and employ here. Combined with today’s announcement on the 50p rate, it reinforces the message that the UK is open for business.'