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Family business at the heart of innovation

Emma Reynolds, Director, Corporate Tax
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With family firms representing 85% of all private sector businesses and employing over 13 million people in the UK, their importance to the UK economy is not to be underestimated. Neither is their contribution to innovation.

We find that family businesses have key characteristics which make them a hotbed for exciting innovation, this includes the below.

  • Responsiveness to change – we frequently see family business owners having a great connection and understanding of all aspects of their business which means they can spot opportunities and respond quickly to changes in their industry. They make decisions quickly and capitalise on first mover advantage.

  • Entrepreneurial culture – often these businesses were built around an idea, a spotted gap in the market, a problem to be resolved. The founders have almost certainly taken great personal risk in establishing their business and continue to demonstrate their risk appetite as they push boundaries with new ideas and innovations.

Family businesses are exactly the kind of companies which should be accessing the UK’s innovation tax reliefs – knowing that the tax savings will be invested in further innovation as they continue to expand their business. Per HMRC’s statistics the average cash per SME claim is £53,000, a good cash injection for any family business.

Unfortunately the management behind these businesses are often some of the busiest we’ve met. Advisor support is crucial to making sure these businesses access the innovation support that our tax system has to offer and that they are so deserving of.

We pride ourselves on understanding our clients’ businesses, keeping in touch with their key innovators and causing as little disruption to the family owner-managers as is possible, while maximising the tax savings they achieve through R&D and the Patent Box.

For more information on how we can help your family business access these valuable tax reliefs, visit our R&D and Patent Box pages, or contact your usual Crowe contact.

Contact us

Stuart Weekes
Stuart Weekes
Partner, Corporate Tax
Thames Valley