An increasingly vocal message we are hearing is a concern about what (if anything) the Northern Powerhouse has to offer SME’s.
Is the Devolution “bounce” generating new business and new leads for SME’s? Do the Region’s SME’s see anything for them resulting from improved connectivity between the Region’s economic centres or do they fear that better data and transport infrastructure will simply make it easier for the Big Boys to dominate the market?
In procuring all of that infrastructure is the Public Sector exploiting opportunities embodied in the Public Contracts Regulations 2016 and the Public Services (Social Value) Act 2012 to promote the interests of and opportunities for SME’s to get a fair share of the work on offer?
We heard the leader of Labour controlled Oldham Borough Council, Jean Stretton, saying yesterday that the “trickle down” theory around the economic productivity generated by the Northern Powerhouse is a meaningless concept for places like Oldham (the most deprived town in England).
We will be launching a survey shortly to test opinion on these important issues, so look out for it…..