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Loughborough Dean supports SME report at Downing Street

Professor Angus Laing

Professor Angus Laing has championed the role business schools play in supporting local businesses at the launch of Lord Young’s Growing Your Business report held today at 10 Downing Street.

Professor Laing, who is Dean of Loughborough University’s School of Business and Economics and Chair of the Association of Business Schools (ABS), was a key advisor for the report, and addressed an audience this morning alongside the Prime Minister’s Enterprise Advisor Lord Young, and serial entrepreneur James Caan.

In the report, Lord Young stresses the importance micro businesses (less than 10 employees) have on the success of the UK economy. He recommends business schools should play a larger role locally by supporting local SMEs as advisors and providers of highly qualified graduate employees.

The report recommends the creation of a national "Supporting Small Business Charter", and an award scheme for business schools that support the growth of SMEs. The report also recommends the extension of the existing Start-Up Loans and creation of new Growth Vouchers.

The Government has stated it is in support of this proposal and will work with the ABS to develop and deliver the charter and awards scheme.

Professor Laing said:

“I welcome Lord Young’s proposals and am in complete agreement with him that business schools have the potential to be invaluable resources to small business.

“Indeed, Loughborough University and other UK business schools are already doing excellent work with small business, but we need to harness the best of this work so that small firms recognise and benefit from what we and others can offer.

“We want to get to a point where small firms recognise business schools as ‘go-to’ resources in key areas of management and leadership skills.”

Lord Young said:

“We have one of the best environments in the world for the creation of new firms. What this report endeavours to do is to help and encourage all those new firms to now take on their first employees and grow.

“Growing our smallest businesses would transform our economy – they are the vital 95%. If just half of the UK's micro businesses took on an additional member of staff, unemployment would be reduced to almost zero. We need to raise the aspirations and confidence of these businesses and give them the tools to grow.”       

The full Growing Your Business report can be viewed here:


Notes for editors

Press release reference number: PR 13/81

  1. Growing your Business is Lord Young’s second report in his capacity as advisor to the Prime Minister on small business and enterprise. His first report, Make Business Your Business, was published in May 2012.
  2. The Government supports Lord Young's vision for a stronger link between business schools and new and growing small businesses. The Department for Business will now work in collaboration with the Association of Business Schools (ABS) to develop this Charter and Award Scheme and build on examples of business schools that are already working with small firms to help them improve their capability and skills. Government will also work with the ABS to look at ways business schools can be part of the referral and delivery of Growth Vouchers and Start-Up Loans, as part of the Charter and its accompanying award scheme.
  3. Loughborough is one of the country’s leading universities, with an international reputation for research that matters, excellence in teaching, strong links with industry, and unrivalled achievement in sport and its underpinning academic disciplines.

    It was awarded the coveted Sunday Times University of the Year 2008-09 title, and is consistently ranked in the top twenty of UK universities in national newspaper league tables. In the 2011 National Student Survey, Loughborough was voted one of the top universities in the UK, and has been voted England's Best Student Experience for six years running in the Times Higher Education league. In recognition of its contribution to the sector, the University has been awarded six Queen's Anniversary Prizes.

    It is a member of the 1994 Group of 11 leading research-intensive universities. The Group was established in 1994 to promote excellence in university research and teaching. Each member undertakes diverse and high-quality research, while ensuring excellent levels of teaching and student experience.


Amanda Overend
Public Relations Officer
Loughborough University
T: 01509 223491

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