Start-Ups Backed By Angels 
A group of business ‘angels’ has welcomed Chancellor George Osborne’s plan, unveiled in the Autumn Statement, to offer 50 per cent income tax relief on the first £100,000 invested in a new company.

The Seed Enterprise Investment Scheme (SEIS), which will be launched in April 2012, is an extension of the existing Enterprise Investment Scheme (EIS) and will apply to all investors, regardless of the rate at which they pay tax.

And apart from this, any ‘angel investors’ using the scheme will benefit from one-off capital gains tax holiday if they reinvest gains made during the 2012-13 financial year.

The group of 35 investors, all leading entrepreneurs, including such figures as Charles Dunstone, founder of Carphone Warehouse, already fund new businesses and believe that the SEIS will encourage others to invest in start-ups.

"We are some of the UK's leading angel investors and venture capitalists, having funded and nurtured thousands of British start-ups between us, creating new jobs and economic opportunities across the UK,” they said.

"At a time of global economic uncertainty, one thing is clear: it's fast growing start-ups that will deliver the lion's share of the new jobs and economic growth that the UK needs."

Mike Lynch, founder and Chief Executive of Autonomy and a member of the group added: “Very early stage investment is the riskiest of all types of funding, and this new tax incentive will encourage more investors to take the plunge and support new British companies.”

"Taken together, we believe that the Seed Enterprise Investment Scheme and the CGT holiday will attract new investment to British start-ups, and help the next generation of British innovations to become the next generation of great British businesses."

As well as announcing the SEIS, the Chancellor also promised to simplify and refocus the EIS and Venture Capital Trust schemes, which has been welcomed by investors.

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