Business Battle-axe Amanda Vigar is to transform into a Business Angel with plans for a legacy to nurture a spirit of enterprise among would-be entrepreneurs.
Amanda, who is Manager Partner at V&A Vigar & Co (Darlington) LLP which has an office in the town’s Victoria Road, is leaving instructions in her will that her entire estate should go into a charitable trust.
The trust, which will be overseen by a panel of business executives, will loan money to people to help them realise their dream of setting up their own company.
As well as being set on extending her philanthropy – Amanda raises money for charity by taking part in triathlons – she feels it is only right she follows the guidance she dishes out to clients. And that advice is that it can be, where appropriate, extremely tax efficient leaving legacies to charity.
Amanda, who publicises her hard-hitting views via a Business Battle-axe blog (http://businessbattle-axe.blogspot.co.uk), said: “One of my big bugbears is how would-be entrepreneurs brimming with great commercial ideas find the door slammed in their face when they seek financial backing.
“I have decided to put my money where my mouth is and do something practical to help those who show they are business-savvy and have a sound plan.
Amanda said: “Not only do I want to put something back into the community, but I also am practising what I preach to my clients.”
She added: “This is one of the most tax efficient ways of dealing with an estate. As a company doing probate, we see many people, including business owner-managers, who are not aware of the tax breaks allied with leaving money to charity and who have wills that are out-of-date because of changes in rules or their personal circumstances.”
While applicants will have to present a sound business case, the trust will support individuals who are struggling to find funding to get their business concept off the ground.
This will include helping individuals unable to access customary sources of finance, those who do not have the necessary security to secure a loan elsewhere, or people who have a quirky idea that may not find favour with mainstream lenders.
The plan also is for the trust to offer mentoring, a ‘listening ear’ and other support such as helping with business premises.
Amanda has extensive experience of what hurdles need to be overcome to become an entrepreneur – not only has she set up her own firm, but her accountancy and tax advisory business specialises in guiding owner-managed ventures.
Amanda is renowned for her outspoken opinions and her perceptive and insightful, but sometimes non-traditional, attitudes to business.
She added: “Having just having turned 50 last year, I am hoping that this legacy does not come to fruition just yet! Not only that, but the longer I live the more cash there will be in the pot.”