December 12, 2016
Thermotec Plastics, based in Electra Park, Witton, is a Birmingham-based plastic and composites manufacturer, ‘bespoke supplier’ of engineered solutions in vacuum forming/thermoforming, polyurethane mouldings and super lightweight composites, working in several sectors including luxury automotive, off-highway vehicles, aerospace and defence.
PRW, the leading trade magazine serving the UK polymer industry, reported last year that Thermotec had received major funding to help support its plans to develop and expand the business. The group received funding approval from Birmingham City Council from the Greenbridge Supply Chain Programme for SMEs which can give grants for business support packages, part-funded by the European Regional Development Fund.
Thermotec’s managing director David Rose said the funding would allow the business to target more business and recruit up to 11 new staff, to join the current workforce of 50 employees, adding:
“Receiving this funding from The Greenbridge Programme, combined with our own investment will allow us to put automated processes in place that not only increase productivity, but allow us to improve the environmental impact of our activities”. In April 2016 Thermotec announced the addition of a seventh Vacuum Forming Machine to to support increased demand and new contracts.
In May Thermotec introduced a new crank tray for Jaguar Land Rover From paper concept to product was a 10 week process; and the timeframe for changes could be shortened to 5 Weeks. The whole project, from design to tooling and manufacturing has been done within a 50 mile radius in the Midlands.
In addition to the new recruits it is aiming to hire, Thermotec has taken steps to upskill its existing workforce with the help of Made in the Midlands members InTraining – a process about which no information has yet been found.
November 19, 2016
Earlier this month Marco Forgione and other people running small and medium-sized businesses wrote to the Financial Times about a ‘flawed’ government consultation on significant changes to business tax reporting:
In just over a year’s time all businesses will be required to file accounts digitally five times a year (every quarter plus an annual final trading statement).
The government’s website on its proposals, Making Tax Digital, is worded positively:
The writers’ comment:
“For the first time in the UK’s history the government will prescribe the way in which all businesses file their accounts, using government approved software. This will require many micro, small and medium-sized businesses to invest in new accounting systems”.
July 7, 2015
Brandauer, a presswork and stamping company now located in Bridge Street West, Aston, Newtown, is supporting a research project at Birmingham City University. A graduate is invited to work for a year, across a broad range of engineering disciplines, including electronics, mechanical and manufacturing engineering, to design and develop a new range of cost effective sensors, fabricated using Brandauer’s core manufacturing capabilities.
To read about the company’s history, recovery from devastating fire and anniversary go to an earlier article on this site. A 2014 BBC account refers in more detail to Brandauer’s design and production of pumping slot shield strips and pressure relief springs for the Hadron Collider.
A full studentship is available to cover the cost of tuition fees at the UK/EU rate or, in exceptional circumstances, the overseas rate, and a stipend. In the 2015/2016 academic year, the stipend is £13,863. The studentship is available to support three years’ full-time study, subject to satisfactory progress.
It will involve acting as a Graduate Teaching Assistant support teaching within the department for up to six hours per week. Studentships are awarded based upon academic excellence. Prospective applicants should contact Professor Michael Ward, firstname.lastname@example.org, to discuss the project.
Deadline for applications: 31 July 2015.
Interviews for shortlisted candidates to be held: 25-29 August 2015.
Start: October 2015.
How to apply? For further details, eligibility and an application form, please follow the link: http://www.jobs.ac.uk/job/ALM789/phd-studentship-between-birmingham-city-university-and-c-brandauer-and-co-ltd-on-the-development-of-low-cost-pressed-metal-sensors/
April 14, 2015
Prem Sikka, director of the Association for Accountancy & Business Affairs (AABA), a not-for-profit organisation, discusses the problem of small businesses bearing the brunt of the tax burden. He outlines the UK tax regime (summary):
Historically, a company with annual taxable profits of up to £300,000 is considered to be small and pays tax at the small company rate. A company with profits of £1.5m or above pays tax at the main rate. And those with profits between between £300,000 and £1.5m are liable to pay the main rate but can obtain marginal relief, with the result that tax in the band is tapered.
In 2010, when the coalition government came to office, the main corporation tax rate was 28% and small companies were taxed at 21%. But in March 2015, the government announced it was aligning the two rates and as of April 1 2015 the rate has been 20% for all companies. The reduction in the headline tax rate for large companies has therefore been much bigger than the tiny cut for small companies.
Professor Sikka explains that large companies have other ways of securing tax advantages: “Parliamentary hearings have shown that large companies are adept at creating complex corporate structures to shift their profits through transfer pricing, royalty programmes, intra-group interest payments and management fees to low or no tax jurisdictions. They have the resources to hire large accountancy firms to craft novel tax avoidance schemes to reduce their effective tax rate. They can also second staff to HM Treasury working parties to influence tax legislation and secure favourable concessions . . . Small companies do not share this luxury. Their ability to avoid taxes is low and their effective tax rates are likely to be high”.
Sikka reflects that today’s small companies are tomorrow’s business giants. The conventional political wisdom is that they should be nurtured and supported, but instead their effective tax burden has increased. Labour may be able to help small companies by reducing their business rates, but that would not amount to a reform of business taxation in its various guises.
He ends by noting that no political party has put forward a coherent set of policies to address these injustices and adds that the difference in power between large and small companies cannot be addressed by piecemeal measures, ad hoc tax cuts or business rate subsidies.
Read the full article here: http://theconversation.com/corporate-tax-cuts-help-big-business-and-small-firms-pay-the-price-39828