Orchard Growth CEO Challenges John Penrose, Shadow Minister for Business, at London Stock Exchange AIM Conference

Ash Mehta attended the recent AIM conference held at the London Stock Exchange with a keynote address from John Penrose, Shadow Minister for Business, providing the opportunity to challenge the opposition's plans for small business regulation.

London, United Kingdom, January 21, 2010 --(PR.com)-- Orchard Growth's CEO, Ash Mehta, recently attended the AIM conference held at the London Stock Exchange, during which keynote addresses were presented by Lord Drayson, Minister of State for Science and Innovation, and John Penrose, Shadow Minister for Business. Penrose outlined his concerns regarding the cost of complying with business regulation for SMEs, quoting a figure of £76 billion spent annually. In order to reduce this amount, the Shadow Minister for Business described plans to involve small businesses in a process of evaluating and ultimately voting for business regulations that should be kept in place. This idea prompted a challenge when questions were invited from the floor from Orchard Growth's CEO that put Penrose on the spot. For more information, call 0845 3700 303 or visit www.orchardgrowth.com.

"When I listened to his ideas about how to improve the state of business regulation, I was rather shocked. It sounded like he wanted to create a bizarre kind of popularity contest, and I couldn't let that go unchallenged," explained Ash. "I asked him if he was aware that he was advocating reforming business regulation by turning it into an X-Factor style vote. I think that Her Majesty's opposition should be producing greater challenge to the government and a more coherent vision for Britain's future." When asked how the Shadow Minister responded, Ash replied; "He was very uncomfortable, I genuinely think that the parallels between his proposed solution and a Saturday night entertainment show had never occurred to him."

"I do think that the cost incurred by small businesses to comply with regulations is a serious issue, although I am curious about the source of the huge figure that was quoted in the speech," Ash continued. "However, there are other factors that are also seriously damaging small businesses, and those changes in regulation have seriously reduced investment in small businesses. I would like to see a data-driven approach to creating the right business climate, akin to the way a financial director would examine performance in a company and how it is affected by changes in company policy and activity. A financial director would never change the direction of a company without examining the impact of that change, and then constantly evaluating results. As long as business policy is determined by party agendas," Ash added, "I simply don't see how the foundations of our business climate can be improved in any meaningful or sustainable fashion."

About Orchard Growth Partners

Orchard Growth Partners provides companies across the UK with financial director services, whenever and wherever growing businesses need it. Orchard Growth specialises in providing interim and part time FDs for growth businesses, providing top level financial expertise without the usual costs and complications of employing a full time finance director. Orchard Growth's finance directors have both financial and commercial acumen, and are experts in strategic business planning and business growth consulting.

Orchard Growth Partners also provides extensive help to growing businesses that are seeking venture capital funding, or other types of small business fund raising. We have extensive connections with the business angel network and provide tailored help for growth businesses at all stages of the capital fund raising process. Our financial director services also assist owners with planning their business exit strategy and also prepare for initial public offerings. Orchard Growth Partners pride themselves upon providing the financial expertise to guide a business owner through the growing pains of business expansion, freeing them to concentrate on running their business.

Orchard Growth Partners Ltd
Ash Mehta
0845 3700 303