CBI employers group urges help for 'forgotten army'

Bank note and £1 coins
Image caption The CBI says there are several ways the Government could improve access to capital

The CBI employers' group has urged the government to do more to help the "forgotten army" of medium-sized businesses.

New measures should include improving access to finance, especially in the bond markets, the CBI said on Monday.

The CBI said firms with a turnover between £10m and £100m represented less than 1% of UK businesses but generated 22% of revenues and 16% of all jobs.

The group said that these firms were "under the radar" of policymakers.

CBI director general John Cridland said: "Medium-sized businesses are truly a forgotten army, and now is the time to unlock their potential.

"We should be championing, nurturing and encouraging our mid-sized firms so that more of them grow and create jobs. For too long these companies, which could inject tens of billions of pounds into our economy, have fallen under the radar of policymakers.

Mr Cridland said he would like to see the UK develop its own versions of the German "Mittelstand" - a backbone of medium-sized firms which export, innovate and generate growth.

"To achieve extra growth, medium-sized firms must have access to new kinds of finance," he said.

"This means opening UK bond markets to medium-sized businesses, encouraging use of venture capital, and making it easier for large companies to invest in medium ones, possibly in their supply chains."

A Department for Business spokesperson said: "We welcome the CBI's focus on the UK's mid-sized companies, and today's report.

"The Government is already focused on this group as part of the growth review, and we will be setting out our proposals alongside the autumn statement in November," the spokesman added.

More on this story

Related Internet links

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites