R&D Tax Credits Claims on the Increase for SMEs

HMRC has released its annual Research and Development Tax Credits Statistics for the years 2014-15 that show an increase in R&D tax credits claims

Here is a summary of the key points:

  • ​16% increase in number of SME R&D tax credits claims from 16,005 (2013-14) to 18,630 in 2014-15
  • £325m increase in tax relief claimed by SMEs topping £1bn in total in 2014-15
  • £21.8bn of R&D expenditure qualifying for R&D tax relief  
  • Manufacturing, Professional, Scientific & Technical plus Information & Communication sectors made the greatest volume of claims - 77% of total claimed

16% increase in number of SME R&D Tax Credits claims up to 18,630 in 2014-15

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But it wasn't all necessarily good news - reading between the lines:

  • 22,445 total number of R&D tax credits claims out of c5m companies in the UK - suggests many are still missing out...
  • The North East, Wales and Northern Ireland appear to under claiming relative to other areas of the country (with the South East, West Midlands, North West and London fairing well)
  • Construction, Wholesale / Retail, Transport and Food are sectors that are under-represented in R&D tax claims relative to number of returns filed 
  • Overall growth in claims falls behind the previous year's growth

22,445 total number of R&D Tax Credits claims V c5m companies in UK - suggests many still missing out...

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Here are our thoughts on the statistics announced:

"We are continuing to see increasing numbers of claims for R&D tax credits as general awareness seems to be on the increase - our experience in relation to the sharp increase in IT & Software related claims definitely bears this out with huge numbers of successful claims

But more evidently still needs to be done as the growth in number of claims has slowed in 2014-15

For the total number of companies that are taking a risk in seeking to develop new products or services to be pegged at 22,445 looks like an understatement to us - 22,445 out of c5,000,000 companies....really?"

There is a time-lag as these stats relate to 2014-15 - we expect to see a further uptick to the stats for 2015-16.