By Nick James

It’s not often that we have an opinion piece on Fresh Business Thinking but this is an exception.

Today saw the launch of StartUp Britain, an initiative created by entrepreneurs for entrepreneurs, as a response from the private sector to the Government’s call for an ‘enterprise-led’ recovery.

The eight entrepreneurs behind the venture have long been champions of enterprise and although StartUp Britain has the full backing of the Prime Minister, the Chancellor and HM Government, as I understand it, the initiative has no government funding.

StartUp Britain is also supported by a number of large companies who are offering discounts and trials to new businesses.

Today on Twitter the StartUp Britain launch and website has taken a bit of a hammering, in particular, from the UK design community as the advice under ‘Create a logo’ links through to a US based website that describes itself as ‘the #1 marketplace for crowd sourced graphic design’.

Although I can understand UK Graphic Designers having a pop at the Prime Minister for this ‘signposting’ the entrepreneurs behind StartUp Britain aren’t part of the government and are encouraging the art of ‘bootstrapping’ and focusing on the cash.

Maybe in hindsight they wish they’d also included a link to a list of UK designers and as this is a website not a printed brochure it can change and my guess is that it probably will!

The other criticism of the initiative is the list of big companies who are offering discounts — the point being that most of these discounts are on offer elsewhere — and well they might but not in one place — and not everyone is ‘hardwired’ to even ask for a discount!

Author Jeffrey Gitomer said that; “People try to rain on your parade because they have no parade of their own."

Writing on Twitter today Shaa Wasmund, founder of who like me does ‘have a parade’ says; “We should be supporting StartUp Britain — its work in progress and like all start ups will get even better with development”.

Well said Shaa — not sure I’m comfortable with government getting anywhere near small businesses but anything that makes starting a business easier should be supported and encouraged.