Ahead of this afternoon's budget announcement by George Osbourne, scheduled to start at 12.15pm, various industry experts have offered their analysis on what to expect and what it may mean for the technology industry.
Ed Relf, CEO of Laundrapp
"In the previous budget George Osborne announced support for the wider sharing economy including making it easier for individuals to sub let their homes. I would like to see this go one step further to support this industry by including tax incentives to support the purchasing of larger capital expenditure required to support the infrastructure needed by a growing on-demand business.
George Osborne also announced the piloting of ‘sharing cities’ in Leeds and Manchester and I would personally like to see this project expanded. By adding local support for the growth of on-demand businesses, this will help form local hubs to facilitate the nationwide expansion of both “sharing" and "on-demand" services.
We’d also like to see a pledge on the continuing rollout of mobile 4G connectivity which still only covers approximately 55 per cent of the UK as well as substantial speed increases from the average of around 15 Mbps and a continuation of the drop in 4G price plans.”
David Vine, MD of UK SMB, Concur
"George Osborne said that he would take the unusual step of another budget to ensure that our economy is productive and on the right footing for the long term. For him to realise his ambition, there are two key elements SMBs will be hoping he will tackle. The first is late payments – which, recently, has been placed firmly in the limelight within the retail industry.
"Late payments paralyse growth and innovation at a grass roots level. I hope to hear something on Wednesday about the promised Small Business Conciliation service as well as a measure that incentivises larger companies to treat their suppliers better."
"Secondly, SMBs need help with their technology investments. They are the power house of our economy and they need the infrastructure to scale. Given that technology is also a pet project of the Government, arguably tax relief should extend to SMBs that want to invest in technology to help their business grow. This obviously needs careful thought around its application but, in principal, it is a measure that could make a tangible difference and provide mutual benefit to two economically important sectors."