According to the boss of the Virgin StartUp Loans Company, the Government must extend the scheme to ensure that freelancers are helped to both start their own businesses and ensure they are able to build on its success.

Mei Shui, the chief of the Government scheme Virgin StartUp, which allows freelance workers to borrow between £500 to £25,000 to set up a business, has called upon the Government to keep the scheme going beyond its planned end date of 2020.

Ms Shui also urged the Government to offer follow-up funding, which would be in the form of a lump sum injection which would be given to freelancer once their new business was up and running.

Ms Shui said: “The failure of start-ups is still very high, despite the fact that we have never seen start-up support so buoyant. [But] we have not really moved at all in terms of the failure rate.”

The Start Up Loans Company has awarded 7,365 loans since it was first started in 2012, meaning that it is helping to fund the creation of around 40 new businesses across the UK every day. It was first launched to provide loans at a fixed rate of interest of six per cent per annum, it was confirmed.

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