Business: Government Assistance

Business, Innovation and Skills written question – answered on 11th September 2013.

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Photo of Chuka Umunna Chuka Umunna Shadow Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills

To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills whether investigations have been carried out by officials in his Department into allegations that coaches working on the GrowthAccelerator programme are paying the fees of clients.

Photo of Michael Fallon Michael Fallon The Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills , Minister of State, Department of Energy and Climate Change

holding answer 9 September 2013

The Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) takes any allegation of malpractice very seriously. When this allegation was raised in an article in The Sunday Times on 28 July, officials asked Grant Thornton (who are responsible for delivering the GrowthAccelerator programme) to investigate.

They assured officials that they had found no evidence to suggest that coaches were paying clients fees. There are a range of safeguards in place, including the fact that it is the client's choice, supported by their Growth Manager and an objective matching process, to decide which coach they want support from. To date, BIS has not received any evidence of malpractice. If evidence is brought forward then I will investigate further.

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