Budget ‘will help city businesses’

Ffrees chief executive Alex Letts, in front of Electric works Sheffield
Ffrees chief executive Alex Letts, in front of Electric works Sheffield
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Budget measures designed to boost small businesses and encourage them to create jobs have been warmly welcomed by the Federation of Small Businesses in South Yorkshire.

Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne announced a new Employment Allowance that will cut up to £2,000 off the National Insurance bill for every business in the country from April next year.

“For the person who has set up their own business and is thinking about taking on their first employee, a huge barrier will be removed,” said Mr Osborne. “They can hire someone on £22,000, or four people on the minimum wage, and pay no job tax.”

The Chancellor also announced a new single rate of corporation tax which, at 20 per cent, will be half that levied in the US, and a third less than in Germany and France. “Britain is open for business,” he said.

Sheffield businessman and Federation of Small Businesses regional chairman Gordon Millward said: “The FSB asked for a budget for small businesses and this is what has been delivered.

“This Budget opens the door for small firms to grow and create jobs.

“The National Insurance contributions cut goes beyond what we were asking for and we are pleased to see the 3p fuel duty rise due in September scrapped.

“We now look forward to hearing details of how the Government intends to take forward the Business Bank that will help provide much needed access to capital for small firms.”

But Sheffield-based entrepreneur Alex Letts felt the Chancellor hadn’t gone far enough. Mr Letts is chief executive of fast growing ‘save as you spend’ company Ffrees Family Finance, based at Electric Works.

He said: “He needed to do much more to help people start and grow businesses. There was not much to help the 25-year-old trying to raise £250,000 to create the next Google.”