Dragons' Den star Linney joins government SME panel

Dragons' Den star and co-CEO of Outsourcery Piers Linney has joined the Cabinet Office SME panel to provide help to small firms wanting to get government business

Dragons' Den star and co-CEO of cloud specialist Outsourcery Piers Linney has been handed a chance to influence government policy around the SME sector.

Linney has joined the Cabinet Office SME Panel, which advises small businesses on how to win public sector contracts and other issues, to sit alongside other business leaders that cover a variety of sectors.

With his background at Outsourcery Linney has been called on to provide the Panel with insights into the IT sector and help more SMEs get a slice of government business.

"The public sector provides a massive opportunity for SMEs, which are the engine of the economy. The aim of having SMEs account for 25% of direct and indirect central government expenditure is within reach and the G-Cloud framework in particular is a world leading example of how IT procurement should evolve to drive value for money and broaden supply bases to introduce more competition and innovation," he said.

He added that for initiatives like the SME Panel to deliver decent support there needed to be feedback from the industry and he hoped that he would be able to provide future input.

Stephen Allott, the Crown Representative for SMEs, said that the Panel was already doing a good job of working out how to help smaller firms pitch and win government business and the Linney appointment would add extra experience from the IT sector.

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