Recession’s High Performer Calls for Tax Breaks

A UK businessman, whose company has been named as one of the best-performing businesses through the recession, has called for the coalition to reduce taxes on companies and working people during the second half of its term. Larry Gould is CEO of thebigword PLC, a language service company that carries out 1.5 million minutes of interpreting and translates 34 million words every month and is ranked 13th in the world in its sector.

thebigword has been named by the professional services and consulting firm Deloitte as one of the best performers during the recession, making “an outstanding contribution to the prosperity of the UK”. In 2007, Larry Gould developed an innovative approach to the approaching downturn. He banned the use of the words ‘recession’ and ‘economic crisis’ in his offices and asked staff to stop reading, watching and listening to gloomy economic news. Instead he told his team that they were working in a “success bubble” and that even if the economy reduced by 20 per cent, that still left 80 per cent to fight for. By the end of 2008, thebigword had grown 57 per cent and increased its turnover to more than £20 million.

In 2012, the company’s turnover exceeded £40 million with more than 500 staff, and it is targeting a place in the world top ten this year. The growth will be driven by investment in people and technology but Gould also believes that the Government has a part to play.

“The current level of taxation, both at corporate and personal level, is a huge disincentive to growth,” says Larry Gould. “The Government asks people to take a risk with their wealth to provide employment and then takes half of it away in tax. Even at relatively modest levels of income, people are paying far too much personal taxation. The mid-point of the coalition’s term provides an opportunity to address this issue and make radical changes that will incentivise people and businesses to grow.”

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