Our View on the
The Chancellor delivered his second budget of 2015 and the first of the Parliament today.
As expected, FinTech specific measures were not as prominent as in recent budgets due in part to the sheer volume of measures recently announced, many of which are yet to be fully implemented.
Measures to reduce the deficit and boost productivity took centre stage along with a commitment to create 3 million apprenticeships, many of which will be within the fast growing FinTech sector.
The Northern Powerhouse started to take shape through a new devolved transport package supported by smart and integrated ticketing technology. Using contactless payments will help develop FinTech across the city regions and is something we will be focusing on as part of our ongoing FinTech regional strategy, which was announced in the March Budget.
The Budget also announced next generation digital economy centres in London, Swansea, Newcastle and Nottingham and seed funding for the Cabinet Office to further boost the drive to digitise and redesign user-friendly public services, fit for the digital age, which deliver efficiencies across the public sector.
There were a number of changes to the investment landscape including a £20 million cap on total risk finance for EIS, and VCTs. There were also further cuts in Corporation tax announced, reducing to 18% by 2020.
There will be a further consultation on including crowdfunding eligibility for ISAs in addition to the previously announced innovative Finance ISA, for loans arranged via a P2P platform.
The Chancellor also announced that a Green Paper will consider whether pensions could also be taxed like ISAs as part of a fundamental reform of tax relief. This follows on the back of radical reforms to annuities in recent budgets, providing further opportunities for the FinTech based wealth management platforms.
We expect a number of follow on announcements over the autumn in relation to measures outlined in the March Budget, including the AML consultation for digital currency exchanges and the RegTech and regulatory sandbox announcements.
Although FinTech was not explicitly mentioned in today’s budget, many of the themes such as productivity, future jobs and regional clusters are hugely relevant to the sector.