The onset of the global financial crisis had a transformative impact on the UK’s business lending environment, and while an initial credit crunch from mainstream lenders restricted SME access to growth capital, alternative finance opportunities quickly rose to prominence. Connecting businesses in need of investment with investors seeking to support the nation’s bustling community of scale-ups, alternative finance offered the timely support necessary for UK SMEs to realise their full growth potential. Central to this have been tax-efficient investment opportunities, and in particular, the Enterprise Investment Scheme (EIS).
Ten years on from the global financial crisis, tax-efficient investment schemes have proven paramount in fuelling the scale-up of SMEs with immense growth potential, with EIS linking investors to businesses with the second tier incentive of targeted tax reliefs. Since its launch in 1993/94, over 26,000 individual companies have raised £15.9 billion through the EIS. In 2015/16 alone, a total of £1,647 million of funds were raised through to scheme to support 3,285 companies. These revised figures correlate with research this year by IW Capital, which revealed that 3.19 million Brits feel the biggest investment opportunity in 2017 lies in private equity investment.
To champion the success of EIS in supporting the growth of UK SMEs in times of economic transition, IW Capital will be releasing a new report next week demonstrating how tax-efficient investment vehicles have been a vital source of capital for scaling businesses in the decade following the financial crisis. To reserve your copy, be sure to register as a member of Access 42 here.