Letters – 11 June

We’re not in the same gang

The unenlightened might be forgiven for inferring from your leader (4 June) that the accountancy profession consists solely of English ICA members.

With luck, most readers will not be duped by this much repeated bias; the wide-ranging skills and influence of tens of thousands of CIMA, ACCA and CIPFA members are amply attested to by their massive presence in board rooms throughout this country and beyond.

Nigel Jeffares, CIMA, Pershore

Unfortunate initials again

Taking Stock (‘Parked on a whiffy acronym’, 4 June) reminds me of the time (around 1975) when Price Waterhouse went south of the river to Southwark Towers.

All the partners were known by their initials and had nameplates on their doors. This system worked fine until Walter Clark (no middle name) joined the partnership.

His nameplate read W Clark!

Anthony Taylor, FCA, Harborne, Birmingham

Not all bad for small ventures

I refer to the article ‘Spread a little wealth’ (4 June).

Joanna Offer concluded that venture capitalists are still reluctant to look at the smaller and less-established end of the market. The chancellor of the Exchequer’s announcement last week, however, may well be signalling significant changes in the market.

At a high-profile conference at London’s Guildhall on 2 June, Gordon Brown unveiled venture capital funds worth #240m backed by the European Investment Bank to invest in smaller, earlier-stage and high-technology firms.

The largest, a #120m fund for the English regions, has been developed jointly by my own firm and Baring Private Equity Partners.

It is encouraging that the government has recognised the importance of small and medium-sized business to the economy at the same time as excellent financial returns are encouraging more institutional investment into the small firms sector.

These new funds in themselves will not change the landscape but they are a move in the right direction.

Venture capitalists have always been keen to back emerging growing companies with good management. I sense that smaller and earlier-stage firms will increasingly find venture capital an enthusiastic finance partner.

Jonathan Gregory, FCA, director of GLE Development Capital, London SE1

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