Regional business excellence rewarded

Over 400 business leaders and guests attended The National Business Awards Regional Programme, sponsored by Orange, in London on Tuesday 14th July, to celebrate the success of South of England’s most innovative, ethical and successful businesses.

Nine organisations were duly rewarded including London-based Clearlybusiness, a Barclays company, triumphed with The Orange Best Use of Technology in Business Award for the operational and financial success of its software services for small UK businesses. Octopus Investments, the leading London investment company, won the prestigious Grant Thornton Business of the Year Award.

Government has failed us say business leaders

With many people now calling for a General Election, research conducted by Business Scene, the online business event community, found that 82% of SME business owners believe the Government could and should have done more to help SMEs in this recession. However when asked if a change in Government would make a difference, a third of SME business owners answered ‘yes’, with 29% saying ‘maybe’, but 30% believe the situation would be the same if the Conservatives were in power.

Sir Alan Sugar to take on teenagers for Junior Apprentice

The BBC has confirmed that it is to launch a junior version of hit business reality show The Apprentice, in which Sir Alan Sugar will get to point his finger and tell 16- and 17-year-olds “You’re fired!”

Junior Apprentice, which will air next year as a five-part BBC1 series, will feature 10 candidates and follow the same format as the main show, although some adjustments will be made to take account of the age of those taking part.

Accountants hail increased flexibility on tax

The Government’s decision to let businesses offset trading losses against the tax they already owe has been welcomed by accountants.

They have praised HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) for giving businesses more breathing space, but questioned why the taxman is not being more rigorous in his assessment of each venture’s ability to pay.

Businesses see growth times ahead

Small businesses have adopted a resilient outlook and a determination to survive the economic crisis, according to a study by O2 with 20 per cent forecasting growth with maintaining – cash flow is the greatest threat.

Small Business Confidence Levels
O2’s Small Business Confidence Index, carried out by business research company trends Research, questioned nearly 3,000 small business owners to gauge how the community is responding to the current economic climate in the first quarter of 2009.