max temp: 12°C

min temp: 2°C

ESTD 1874 Search

UK: East of England firms ‘benefit least’ from finance scheme for small firms

09:00 21 February 2013

Business and Enterprise Minister Michael Fallon

Business and Enterprise Minister Michael Fallon

Businesses in the East of England are amongst those benefiting least from a scheme to give small firms access to finance.


The Enterprise Finance Guarantee (EFG), introduced in 2009 in response to the credit crunch, sees the Treasury act as guarantor on 75pc of individual bank loans between £1000 and £1m to small and medium sized firms finding it hard to access a commercial loan.

But a report carried out by academics for the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) showed firms in the east had not participated as much as other areas.

In the Eastern region 14.7 firms in every 10,000 had gained finance through EFG, compared to 17 in the West Midlands, 16.8 in the East Midlands, 16.6 in the South East, 16.4 in the North East and 16 in the North West.

Firms in Wales and Scotland also received finance through the EFG more than businesses in the east. Meanwhile companies in Yorkshire, the South East and London used the initiative less.

Chris Starkie is programme manager at the New Anglia Local Enterprise Partnership, a grouping of council and business leaders from East Anglia.

He said: “We are encouraging businesses to challenge the banks to ask them for finance and also not to assume that they are going to say ‘no’.

“Ensuring business can access finance is an important priority for us, that’s why next month we’ll be launching our business growth fund that will provide grant finance for expanding firms.”

The BIS study suggested EFG added £1.1bn to the UK economy overall, and that for every £1 invested it had helped deliver £33.50 in output.

Meanwhile the researchers, from the University of Durham, argued it had created 6,500 jobs and safeguarded more than 12,000 across the UK.

They suggested lower rates of participation in the East could be because it was more prosperous are with businesses having better access to conventional bank lending.

But business minister Michael Fallon admitted further pressure needed to be exerted to ensure the initiative performed well in all areas.

He said: “Clearly the demand is there for this type of financial support so we must start to see an increase in take-up.

“I have already begun publishing EFG lending by each individual bank, because businesses should know which bank they are best off approaching and I will continue holding the banks to account until lending levels improve.”



The Hot Off The Press premises inTacket Stret, Ipswich, which the company has vacated after 25 years.

A printing company which has operated from the centre of Ipswich for 25 years has relocated – to a purpose-built log cabin in the owner’s garden.

Elaine and Nigel Bowen of Vanguard Communications.

Two businesses which receive support from Suffolk enterprise agency Menta have received Small Business Sunday awards from entrepreneur and former BBC Dragons’ Den star Theo Paphitis.

Wayne Seddon from The Bridge House in London receives his Adnams Pub of the Year award from chief operating officer Karen Hester.

Southwold-based Adnams has named The Bridge House, near London’s Tower Bridge, as its Pub of the Year.

A file picture of the Sanofi factory in Haverhill.

More than 50 jobs are to be axed at the Haverhill site of pharmaceutical group Sanofi.

Georgi Rollings, left, and Emma Lawrence of Starfish Accounting.

An Ipswich based provider of online company secretarial software has reached the landmark milestone of having 10,000 users.

Robert Hughes, managing director of Hughes Electrical, and Andy Yallop, store manager, at the company's new branch in Bury St Edmunds.

Hughes Electrical has opened the doors of its new store in Bury St Edmunds following a £200,000 investment which has also created six new jobs, doubling the size of its workforce in the town.

Barclays has been fined £72m by the Financial Conduct Authority.
Photo: Jonathan Brady/PA Wire

Banking giant Barclays has been fined £72million by the City watchdog for failing to handle potential financial crime risks relating to a £1.88billion transaction for ultra high-net-worth clients.

Ipswich council leader David Ellesmere at the former sugar beet factory site off Sproughton Road.

A new Enterprize Zone involving 10 development sites across East Anglia, with the potential to create 18,500 jobs, was announced by Chancellor George Osborne today.

Natalie Moloney, of Woodbridge events firm Pink Lemonade Productions.

An entrepreneur is up for a fifth business award since her event planning company launched last year.

The Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne, delivering his joint Autumn Statement and Spending Review to MPs in the House of Commons
Photo: PA Wire

The Chancellor’s Autumn Statement and Comprehensive Spending Review today divided opinion between unions employers.

Most read

Most commented

Topic pages

Local business directory

Our trusted business finder

Property search

e.g. Oxford or NW3
Powered by Zoopla

Digital Edition

Read the East Anglian Daily Times e-edition today E-edition

Great British Life

Great British Life
MyDate24 MyPhotos24