Posted: 17 / 01 / 2017

Businesses across the North West aren’t taking advantage of government incentive schemes.

According to a recent report, research has shown that North West businesses are losing out on millions of research and development tax relief every year compared to similar companies in other areas of the UK.

During 2015, a record number of companies claimed the relief, taking the total amount claimed up to almost £14 billion. Despite this increasing utilisation of R&D tax relief in the UK, only 10% of claims are submitted by companies in the North West. A large concentration of claims are submitted by companies based in London and the South East. This is shown in the following graph extracted from HMRC’s report.

The report also found that most claims were made by young companies, being those up to five years old. This is not surprising as we would expect new companies to spend more time and effort developing new products and ideas in order to gain competitive advantage over established businesses.

Head of Tax, David Evans says:

We are seeing an increasing number of clients coming to us asking for help with R&D claims. However, these statistics clearly show that companies in the North West have some way to go to catch up with their counterparts in other areas of the UK.

The Government are using the R&D tax relief schemes to promote “greater R&D spending, leading to greater investment in innovation”. This is part of the intention to make the UK a world leader in innovation. Clearly, each year more & more companies are claiming the relief (see graph below), but we don’t know if this is because more R&D is being undertaken or if the relief is becoming more widely known and understood.


Businesses who undergo projects to either create new products or systems or to upgrade and improve existing products or systems are likely to be carrying out qualifying R&D.

If you have done this then you may be entitled to enhanced tax reliefs, that will either substantially reduce your corporation tax bill or produce a refund if claiming tax credit relief.

We’re not just restricted to traditional technology business – we’ve also worked on R&D claims in industries in recycling, dental, app development, publishing, distribution, automotive, marketing and more.

Our experience with R&D


100% success rate
We continue to have a 100% success rate in claiming research and development tax relief


£10m claimed in total
This year we will have claimed a total of over £10 million of R&D tax relief for our clients


£2m into client’s pockets
This represents almost £2 million of tax refunds going straight into clients’ pockets


Chat to our experts who will be able to guide you on R&D or more information, see our R&D tax relief page.