Small Businesses: Research

Department for Business, Innovation and Skills written question – answered at on 1 April 2016.

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Photo of Daniel Zeichner Daniel Zeichner Shadow Minister (Transport)

To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, what assessment he has made of the effect on small and medium-sized enterprises of the decision to replace research grants for companies with loans.

Photo of Jo Johnson Jo Johnson Minister of State (Universities and Science)

Like many of our competitor economies, we are looking to provide a range of innovation finance products to meet the needs of businesses; this will still include grant funding. Some countries (like France, Finland, or the Netherlands) make use of a variety of financial instruments to support innovative businesses. We have been working to understand how we can apply these established approaches to support, drive and encourage innovation in the UK. In the coming months we will be conducting market research to engage with, and fully understand the needs of, innovative businesses of all sizes in the UK. As part of the first phase of implementation the Government will announce the details of a pilot and accompanying evaluation in late 2016. The pilot will test specific financial products ahead of progressing to full roll-out.

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