Action plan to turn the UK into a “world leader” in new technology

Ministers recently revived the possibility of the Government launching its own Venture Capital Investment Trust to help support cutting edge start-ups.

Under proposals, the Treasury would set up the trust through the state-run British Business Bank (BBB), with the hope that it could ultimately deliver around £20 billion for those firms at the forefront of innovation.

The long-term plan – as set out by Chancellor Philip Hammond – could see the trust eventually floated on the London Stock Exchange (LSE) or sold to a fund management group.

Earlier this year, the Government published a consultation paper, titled “Financing growth in innovative firms”, which acknowledged the long-standing problem of British businesses struggling to scale up because of a lack of finance. This meant that the country wasn’t always realising its potential, for all that it has remained an attractive place to launch an enterprise.

And now an action-plan has been published on the back of responses, with hopes that the UK can become a “world leader” in new technology. The document said that ministers were also committed to identifying the main obstacles to those businesses which are keen to expand.

Another proposal which has been put forward would see the British Business Bank identify £1.5 billion of investment in both first-time and emerging fund managers as part of its Enterprise Capital Programme.

Efforts would also involve nurturing overseas investment in UK venture capital through the Department for International Trade, which it is hoped could encourage an additional £1billion of investment.

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