Tooting has a large community of small businesses and self-employed workers. As a successful entrepreneur in Earlsfield, I understand the challenges that these local businesses face and will take action to ensure they are successful too. You can see some of my business initiatives listed below.
As your MP I would continue this local work, but I can also help in Parliament. For example, the Conservative Manifesto has committed to a review of business rates and rebalancing the burden away from local shops and towards online retailers, who are taking a growing share of trade. This gives me a real opportunity to use my business experience to argue the case for Tooting's local shops, and see that the legislation that is developed helps reduce the business rates burden on our local retailers.
It is vitally important that we support our local firms, both to improve our community in Tooting and to help the national situation. The only way we can build a strong economy, eliminate the deficit and generate tax revenues for investment in public services is through growing employment. Since small businesses are responsible for most job creation, it’s crucial that we encourage this sector to create growth and provide jobs for the next generation.
I know from my experience what companies need to flourish – lower taxes, a skilled workforce, and access to capital – and as the Tooting MP I would use my expertise and contacts to help our local business people. Below you can read of some of the initiaitives I have already launched to help new and existing businesses in our area.
Love Your Local Initiative - Tooting, Balham and Earlsfield
A key part of the Tooting business comunity is the independent shops that line our high streets and make our area such a diverse and interesting place to live. That's why I have run the Love Your Local initiative for the past three years, celebrating our local shops, cafes, restaurants and pubs. By helping these businesses connect with local residents this initiative will help them thrive in the years to come.
The 2016 competition is underway so click here to vote for your favorite local retailers. The 2015 competition saw over 1,500 votes cast by local residents and you can read about the winners on your local high street here.
Helping Tooting's Start-ups
I'm give my time as a volunteer in a number of ways that help local people start up new businesses and create jobs:
- I am working on a number of projects to help the excellent Business Launchpad charity in Tooting Broadway, which helps disadvantaged 18-30 year olds become self-employed; recently I won funding for a new grant fund which will give small grants to young people who need a little cash to get their idea started
- I mentor the long-term unemployed at the Shaw Trust charity, helping them realise their goal of self-employment
- I use my business experience to advise a number of new companies in Tooting that need help on various topics.
If you live locally and would like help with starting or growing a business, please do get in touch with me and I'll be happy to help.