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£30m ‘advice voucher scheme’ for SMEs launched

A £30m VOUCHER SCHEME for SMEs to gain access to professional advice has been launched during the Budget.

The Growth Vouchers Programme will look to support SMEs that have found barriers to growth, and require expert help.

Current details are sketchy, but the Budget ‘Red Book’ states that the scheme will look to “target a number of speci?c areas of advice such as making a successful loan application to a bank or taking on an employee”.

The profession has often looked at promotions to encourage small businesses to take early stage advice, rather than stall their progress because of red tape. The ICAEW offers a business advice service where some of its members provide free support.

Elaine Clark, founder of Cheapaccounting, is delighted by the government’s move – having suggested a similar scheme last year.

“It’s fantastic news,” said Clark. “But the devil will be in the detail. I hope there’s no bureaucracy to administer.”

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