The UK’s micro-businesses are being put at the heart of a new campaign to explore the potential boost to the economy if every single one of them grew by 10 per cent.
To result in a report that will be presented to ministers, the campaign will identify “what it would take” by way of an “intervention” by the government for such growth to be achievable.
The research-led probe is necessary because the support that sole traders and other one-person businesses need to expand “doesn’t exist”, say the campaign’s founders Enterprise Nation and Sage.
They believe that if ‘micro-businesses’ – which includes self-employed freelancers – even grew by only a “small fraction”, that a boost to the economy and a “more even distribution of wealth” would be the results.
The campaign is despite some studies into the owners of micro-businesses showing that such single-person traders often don’t wish to grow, preferring, for numerous reasons, to stay small.
The reasoning behind the ‘small is beautiful’ stance that the owners took in the studies, which have been conducted in both the US and the UK, has been summed up by a leading adviser to such enterprises.
Chartered accountant SJD Accountancy said: “Growth is not, as many believe, the only criterion of success in business. Indeed, it is perfectly possible to remain a small business and still be successful.”
Yet the campaign, due to be rolled out this week, states that “all evidence points to the record number of small businesses [currently in the UK being] on the verge of growth.”
It added: “The 10% Growth Campaign seeks to find out how micro-businesses are funding their own growth, what help they think would improve or speed up that process and where their long-term expectations lie.”