According to Dave: “We’re going to bring in a new Big Society Bank so that social enterprises have access to the start-up finance they need to bid for government contracts.”
But Futurebuilders was set up to do that and couldn’t give all its cash away. There’s also plenty of other organisations offering loans to social enterprises. I’d pose the same question to Dave as I pose to Labour government supporters of this scheme: who are these social enterprises who have viable plans to make use of loan finance but can’t get that finance from existing sources? I’m yet to read a sensible theoretical hypothesis for why this bank is needed, let alone anything backed by evidence.
Clearly this launch of this bank, whatever it ends up being called, would be an opportunity for the most self important sector leaders to run round Whitehall with their hands in the air in a football style celebration of their lobbying prowess. Clearly it’s good for governments of whatever colour to indulge the self importance of sector leaders as cheaply and painlessly as possible. I’m keen for either sector leaders or politicians to explain what this has love-in got to do with tackling social need.