Margot James MP appointed new minister for small business

Former business owner James has replaced Broxtowe MP Anna Soubry and will be working alongside new business secretary Greg Clark

Former entrepreneur Margot James MP has been appointed as the new minister for small business, consumers and corporate responsibility – replacing Anna Soubry MP who recently resigned as minister.

James, who has been an MP for Stourbridge since 2010, co-founded clinical trial and PR consultancy organisation Shire Health Group in 1986 and went on to sell the business almost 20-years later to WPP in 2004.

She has also worked as a mentor for The Prince’s Trust and Young Enterprise and sits on the court of governors at the London Stock Exchange.

James will no doubt bring her business background to her new role, working alongside recently-appointed business secretary Greg Clark.

Unlike Soubry’s role, it’s not expected that James will attend cabinet discussions.

On the appointment, small business owner James Sherwin-Smith of Growth Street commented:

“The new minister has a crucial role representing the interests of small and medium enterprises.  In particular, I would ask the minister to focus on improving the competitive and regulatory environment for the provision of financial services to businesses, particularly in light of the Competition and Markets Authority investigation that will conclude next month, and the ongoing review underway at the Financial Conduct Authority.

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“Small and medium enterprises are responsible for the majority of private sector employment and are the growth engine of our economy. However, it is disappointing to see that the importance of small business in the new government has effectively diminished, as the brief was previously held by a minister of state who attended cabinet.”


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