Goldman Sachs Expands U.K. Small-Business Plan to Boost Economy

  • U.S. bank widens SME support program throughout Britain
  • Report finds SMEs can play key role in bolstering productivity

Goldman Sachs Group Inc. is expanding its small business support program in the U.K. as the Wall Street firm works with the government to help boost economic growth and create jobs.

The 10,000 Small Businesses education and funding plan will be opened up to all companies throughout Britain from four existing regional sites, the U.S. investment bank said on Monday. The announcement was made alongside a report that said supporting small- and medium-sized enterprises may help bolster productivity growth, something the Bank of England has identified as a source of weakness since the 2008 financial crisis.

About 1.15 billion pounds ($1.75 billion) of gross value could be added to the economy within the first year if the 110,000 U.K. SMEs that have the potential to start exporting or to grow existing overseas sales did so, according to the report, which was co-written with the British Business Bank and the Enterprise Research Centre.

Launched in the U.K. in 2010, the 10,000 Small Businesses program is an investment by the Goldman Sachs Foundation to provide entrepreneurs with business education and access to capital. The initiative, which also operates in the U.S., has helped the firm establish relationships with local politicians and improve its public image in the wake of the financial crisis.

Michael Bloomberg, founder and majority shareholder of Bloomberg LP, parent company of Bloomberg News, is co-chairman of the 10,000 Small Businesses Advisory Council.

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