Help is available for struggling small businesses – don’t give up yet!

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The Chancellor, Rishi Sunak announced yesterday that, UK’s small businesses will have 100% guaranteed access to loans of up to £50,000 – the new “Bounce Back loans” scheme. Read more.

The scheme has been designed to ensure that small firms who need vital cash injections to keep operating can get finance in a matter of days. Ever since the government support packages were announced, the feedback we have been receiving from our community is that the Government still needed to go a step further and find ways to quickly support the small business sector. Our founder and CEO, Shalini Khemka, supported by Lord Stanley Fink, Lord Bilimoria CBE DL, Lord Ranger CBE, Darryl Eales, and others, wrote a letter to the Chancellor a few weeks ago asking him to issue out some urgent addendums to the COVID-19 support packages for SMEs.

View letter to the Chancellor.

Following the letter to the Chancellor, Shalini Khemka came out on E2E LIVE saying “we need tweaks to Government support packages today otherwise, a bad situation will be even worse as we emerge from lockdown… The most pressing area is around CBILS where a move towards 100% Government guarantees is essential.”

Despite never asking for a loan before, E2E was denied access to its first loan application a few weeks ago. This prompted us to survey our members to find out how many people were also experiencing the same challenges; in terms of delays in response from banks, requests for mountains of tangential paperwork and still being denied lending for marginal discrepancies. The results came back showing majority of our members were not been able to make good use of the Government packages. The following week, Shalini was invited on the Ian King Show on Sky News, where she asked if the Chancellor could look at giving 100% guarantee on business loans. To watch the interview please press play below.

Interview with Shalini Khemka on the UK Government extending COVID-19 loan scheme for SMEs.

E2E is one of the first entrepreneurs’ organisations to formally make this request; during the Ian King Show, Shalini said “the Chancellor needs to decide on the maximum limit, but it should be a percentage of the turnover…” Yesterday, the Chancellor announced that the Bounce Back loans will be capped at £50,000.

This initiative should enable thousands of small business to now access the funds they need quickly to try stay afloat and survive the impact of the pandemic. For many SMEs, cash flow is in a critical situation already and serious work needs to be done to ensure that everything works as a system and collectively we all do everything we can to assist the long term prosperity of the UK.

Moving forward, E2E will continue to be the voice of entrepreneurs and provide as much support as possible to make sure that we all survive this. Other pressing concerns currently being addressed by E2E right now are:

  1. The ability to furlough people on a pro-rata basis.

  2. Dividends to be included as part of pay.

  3. Top up tax credits where employers are topping up the wages of furloughed staff.

At times of greatest need, we need the Government to be much more nimble in making change for SMEs and because of that, we are asking you talk to us about your challenges and needs if there’s any way we can help you or carry this forward.

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