Cuts to government departmental budgets mean the Business Growth Service, which includes under its umbrella the Growth Accelerator programme, is to be axed, according to a document leaked to third party contractors.
A message on the Business Growth Service website now reads: “The Business Growth Service is now closed to new customers. Contractual commitments to existing customers will be honoured, as long as all support and related activity is completed by 31 March 2016.
“If you’re looking to find what business support is available in your area, your local Growth Hub may be able to help.”
The service was available for any business with up to 250 employees in the UK, a turnover of up to £40m and not part of a larger group.
The Growth Accelerator programme was designed to help small businesses with mentoring, match funding of up to £2,000 for senior management coaching and aiding small businesses through networks and advice.
The letter, as first reported on businessdesk.com, advised recipients to “withdraw from any events where the Business Growth Service has a formal presence, minimising costs wherever possible”.
It also revealed that as of midnight tonight (Monday 30 Nov) no more contractual agreements will be entered into, although current obligations will still be met.
In the Autumn Spending Review George Osborne announced that the budget for the Department of Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) is to be cut by 17%. In real terms this will see the total budget fall from £16.6 billion this year to £13.2 billion in 2019-20.