A new scheme to place apprentices in small and medium-sized quoted companies has been announced.
The government initiative revealed by business secretary Sajid Javid will place apprentices in businesses quoted on AIM, London Stock Exchange’s growth market for ambitious small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).
Speaking at the London Stock Exchange Group’s event to celebrate AIM’s 20th anniversary, Javid said the scheme will ‘bring together innovative new companies that are the future of British business, and the hardworking young apprentices who are the future of the British workforce’.
The London Stock Exchange Group Foundation has committed an initial £20,000 to underwrite the cost of administering the scheme, with additional funds raised at the event.
The scheme will be run by the educational charity City Gateway.
More than 850 companies from across the country are quoted on AIM, and the scheme will work to highlight the opportunities they offer to young people.
Javid says, ‘World-class apprenticeships are essential to support our employers and give hope and opportunity to young people. We are committed to three million new apprenticeship starts in this Parliament, and AIM’s Apprenticeship scheme is exactly the kind of project that will help make that vision a reality.’
Xavier Rolet, CEO, London Stock Exchange Group adds, ‘As we celebrate 20 years of AIM providing capital to companies to fund their growth, we are delighted to launch this new SME Apprenticeship Scheme in partnership with City Gateway.
‘SMEs are a key driver of jobs, innovation and economic growth in the UK. Matching the UK’s most dynamic growth companies with talented young people seeking life-changing opportunities is a win-win.’
The announcement follows news on 14 June that the term ‘apprenticeship’ will be protected in law, strengthening their reputation, helping working people and ensuring apprenticeships are recognised as a career path equal to university education.