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Budget makes some progress in restoring print’s confidence

In the first Budget to take place on a Monday since 1962, Philip Hammond made moves to commit the government to greater spending on health – £20.5bn more for the NHS over the next five years and at least £2bn specifically committed to mental health.

Apprenticeship Levy under fire for failing businesses

More than a year has passed since the Apprenticeship Levy was launched last April and many feel that it is not working as intended.

Could more gov’t spending aid print?

In his speech at the Conservative conference last week, chancellor Philip Hammond said he plans to treat investment spending differently to day-to-day spending. He is aiming to plough more into infrastructure, technology and innovation and said it was “common sense” to invest in supporting growth and jobs.

Will new service assist print’s Davids against Goliath clients?

Among measures on the EU referendum, housing, trade unions and immigration announced in the Queen’s Speech at the end of last month nestled The Small Business Conciliation Service, a proposed independent arbiter of payment disputes between large and small businesses. Few details are yet available, as the government is holding a consultation first, but the idea is it will help small businesses get paid without unduly upsetting their clients.

Has Creditsafe put printers’ ratings at risk?

During the past month, a quiet crisis has been spreading across the print industry, sparked over the August bank holiday weekend by an upgrade to corporate credit report provider Creditsafe’s ratings model.

Ink price hike fears grow as manufacturers’ margins shrink

While there is generally a more buoyant mood in the industry at the moment, there is an increasingly insistent murmur that ink prices may be on the rise.

Government details plans to tackle late payments to SME

Late payment from customers to suppliers is an ongoing problem that can have severe consequences for small businesses. Not being paid on time hurts companies financially because it creates cashflow issues that are sometimes impossible to recover from.

Funding difficulties leave printers asking if scheme is viable

With the government continuing to pump money into the Regional Growth Fund (RGF) faster than it can be spent by either the BIS or the intermediaries through which the vast majority of funds are distributed, it is perhaps surprising to learn that the scheme is becoming less and less generous, to the point that some printers are now turning their backs on what is ostensibly free money.

Concerns grow over apprenticeships

On the government’s ongoing plans to reform apprenticeships, training guru Jonathan Ledger has cautionary words for printers toying with training: “Be careful what you wish for.”

Green shoots prompt investment in leaner, meaner sector

Infinity Finishing was one of the lucky ones, but just how lucky only time will tell. The business started in mid October, but unlike many would-be start-ups, this one was made possible with a loan from an unlikely source - a high-street bank.

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