Thousands of Scottish Jobseekers Becoming Their Own Bosses

June 25, 2015

Thousands jobseekers around Scotland have taken advantage of the government’s New Enterprise Allowance (NEA) scheme to start their own businesses over the course of the recent months.

In fact, official figures show that more than 3,200 Scots become their own bosses with the help of the initiative in the 12 months after March 2014.

That number amounts to a doubling of the figure for the previous year and means that some 6,580 new businesses have now been established in Scotland with the help of the NEA since it was first made available in April 2011.

According to the government’s figures, the doubling of NEA applicants in Scotland over the last year was a much stronger rate of growth than that recorded anywhere else in the UK.

Glasgow saw particularly strong interest in the enterprise allowances, with more than a thousand people across the city setting up new businesses with the assistance of the scheme in the year prior to April 2015.

The NEA is available to lone parents and anyone claiming either jobseekers allowance or sickness benefits with the initiative granting access to business mentors and expert advice, as well as weekly allowances as financial support.

“Starting up in business successfully needs so much more than just funding – it needs the right support and advice at the right time, and we’re doing just that through the New Enterprise Allowance scheme,” said Priti Patel, an employment minister from the Department of Work and Pensions.

“We will ensure that every part of Britain, including Scotland, benefits from a growing economy and that everyone who works hard gets the opportunities they need to succeed.”

Among the beneficiaries of the NEA scheme in Scotland are Jennie Grear who set up a vintage clothing emporium in Glasgow after finding out how she could claim allowances in support of her entrepreneurial efforts.

“The help I got was invaluable. My plan had just been to buy stuff and sell it. I hadn’t made up a business plan or thought about financial projections. I am dyslexic so would have found it really hard to do that on my own,” she explained.

“Thanks to the scheme thousands of people in Scotland have realised the hugely rewarding success of becoming their own boss,” said David Mundell, Scottish Secretary.

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