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The UK’s smallest businesses are to be offered up to £2,000 to spend on professional business advice from an ACCA accountant under a £30m government programme designed to provide access to specialist support including financial management say Harris & Co accountants Northampton, the specialist small business accountants.

The Growth Voucher project is being jointly run with the Department of Business Innovation and Skills (BIS), the Cabinet Office and other organisations, and will be delivered by small business network Enterprise Nation. The initiative is being run as a randomised controlled trial to test out what sort of business advice is most effective for government to support. Every business that takes part in the programme will be monitored to see how they progress over the next two to three years.

Under the scheme, up to 20,000 small businesses who have not paid for strategic external advice in the past three years will be eligible to receive a maximum contribution of £2,000 for advice and professional support across five key areas including access to finance, sales and marketing, management and leadership, employment relations and making the most of digital technologies.

Businesses receiving a voucher under the scheme will be helped to find advisers with whom they can spend the voucher and gain advice via a marketplace developed by Enterprise Nation. ACCA is one of the founding professional bodies in the marketplace and has been working with BIS since the inception of the scheme.

Glenn Collins, head of technical advisory at ACCA UK, said: ‘This initiative is aimed at businesses with less than 50 employees. Rather than simply throw money at them, the Growth Voucher project links funds to valuable advice from professionally qualified accountants that small businesses need as they look to grow, whether that be through accessing finance, exploiting the assets within the small business or through looking to export to new markets.’

Applications under the scheme are now open, and details are available HERE

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