Business angels may pick up some extra tax breaks if the Tories win Election 2017.
Britain already has the Seed Enterprise Investment Scheme (SEIS) and Enterprise Investment Scheme (EIS), which both offer significant tax incentives for investors.
But hidden deep in the Conservative Election 2017 manifesto could be some great news for investors.
The manifesto says: “We will help innovators and startups, by encouraging early stage investment and considering further incentives under our world-leading Enterprise Investment Scheme and Seed Enterprise Investment Scheme.”
The document goes onto to say that technology businesses will win from Brexit.
Help for digital businesses
“We will help digital businesses to scale up and grow, with an ambition for many more to list here in the UK, and open new offices of the British Business Bank in Birmingham, Bristol, Cambridge, Edinburgh, Manchester and Newport, specialising in the local sector,” says the manifesto.
“As we set out in chapter one, we will ensure digital businesses have access to the best talent from overseas to compete with anywhere in the world. This will be complemented by at least one new institute of technology in the UK, dedicated to world-leading digital skills and developed and run in partnership with the tech industry.
“When we leave the European Union, we will fund the British Business Bank with the repatriated funds from the European Investment Fund.”
However, the EIS Association, a not for profit group that promotes EIS and SEIS, warns that tax breaks for investors should not narrowly focus on technology start-ups but other small businesses as well.
“We welcome any changes to the EIS and SEIS regimes that result in more smaller companies getting access to the funding they need to grow,” said director general Mark Brownridge.
“But if new incentives are targeted only at digital ‘innovators’ and start-ups, then it could be a huge missed opportunity. We certainly don’t begrudge digital companies additional EIS and SEIS incentives. In principle, we support them getting them. The UK is producing some fantastic businesses in the digital arena, which is an increasingly important part of the economy.
“However, it is still a relatively small one, and so wouldn’t such incentives be more effective if entrepreneurs and businesses from across a broad spectrum of sectors benefited from them, not just from a niche segment?”
The guide is downloadable from SEIS.co.uk, and provides an easily digestible source of vital information for anybody who could benefit from the scheme.