In response to the Chancellor's Budget announcement, David Ascott, Corporate Finance Partner and David Hewitt, Transaction Tax Partner at business and financial adviser Grant Thornton UK LLP, comment on the implications for mid-sized business (MSB) accessing finance for growth:
David Ascott said: "The Chancellor's Budget included quite a lot of action to stoke demand for finance, particularly around capital investment and exports, but very little to support the actual supply of funds businesses now need. Nothing was mentioned in terms of supporting or even directing banks or alternative lenders to help UK businesses expand.
"Initiatives such as the Annual Investment Allowance – a key driver to increasing demand for funding – are likely to encourage many MSBs to invest in plant and machinery, but they will need the finance industry to 'play ball'.
"The strong boost to savings and investments from the ISA and pension changes should provide stronger capital levels to funders, but whether and how these funds reach the cash-hungry MSB sector is still to be determined."
David Hewitt added: "The Chancellor introduced some supportive measures for the UK economy, which will likely see an increase in cash floating in the system. However, he certainly could have gone a lot further to support UK businesses – particularly small and mid-market organisations' ability to access finance for growth.
"We want to see SMEs grow and large businesses can play an active role in supporting this growth by investing in them and nurturing innovation. Big business, particularly those sitting on large cash stock piles, is a key financier of small business. Initiatives such as the Corporate Venture Scheme, offering corporation tax and loss relief, would encourage larger businesses to help foster the next generation of UK PLCs. " business/#sthash.YZhEiofU.dpuf