Small Business Saturday to be introduced in UK

/ Posted By - Bradleys Accountants / Categories - Advice for Small Businesses

A British version of the US Small Business Saturday initiative is set to be launched this December by shadow business secretary Chukka Umunna, according to a report by The Independent.

Stateside, the event, which has the backing of President Barack Obama and has been held for the last three years, succeeded in generating $5.5 billion (£3.6 billion) of spending with independent retailers over the 2012 Christmas period.

The American event takes place just after Thanksgiving and is considered to be one of the biggest retail days of the year.

Mr Umunna has secured December 7th as the day for the British version of the initiative, with seven business organisations, such as the Forum of Private Business and the Federation of Small Businesses, offering their support.

“I want to make Small Business Saturday a reality in Britain to actively champion, celebrate and showcase small, independent businesses on one of the busiest shopping days of the year,” Mr Umunna told The Independent.

"Small Business Saturday has been a great success in the US and has grown into a movement, boosting spending in small businesses by $5.5bn last year."

Mr Umunna has been working with credit card firm American Express to launch the event in the UK, as it holds the copyright to the US Small Business Saturday. A spokesperson from the firm said that it is working to see how it can support the UK initiative later on in 2013.

The MP has also said that a Labour government, should it be voted in, would set up a small business agency that would deal directly with Britain’s smaller firms.

Labour is trying to drum up more corporate support ahead of the 2015 general elections, after it failed to secure many votes from Britain’s businesses in 2010.

The other five organisations set to support Small Business Saturday in the UK are the British Chambers of Commerce, the Association of Convenience Stores, British Independent Retailers Association, the Northern Ireland Independent Retail Trade Association and the National Federation of Retail Newsagents.

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