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Ukraine crisis: BVCA resource centre

Useful links

The BVCA and our members are profoundly saddened by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and the resultant humanitarian crisis. Our full statement, produced alongside Invest Europe and other European private capital associations, condemning the attack and outlining our support for the country and its people can be read here.

In the days, weeks and now months following the attack, we have been in constant dialogue with our members to support them as they help their employees and portfolio businesses in Ukraine. Detailed below are the steps taken to date, and the resources produced by the BVCA, to assist our members in a number of different ways.
Ukrainian employees and refugees

Tech Nation scheme and Global Talent Visa

Tech Nation is launching a scheme matching immigrant founders and the leading players in the UK tech ecosystem and are looking for VCs who can dedicate some of their time to the Open Office Hours initiative throughout May and June. VCs will be matched with founders taking part, in line with their expertise, focus and experiences. Further details can be found here. Tech Nation have also published important updates on the Global Talent Visa which dispels misinformation circulating online, and are prioritising applications from any nationality currently in Ukraine (or Ukrainians in neighbouring countries), as well as Russians and Belarusians employed by UK companies and affected by the SWIFT sanctions.


Supporting refugees to access jobs in the UK

BVCA Director General, Michael Moore, has written to the Home Office to offer support of the BVCA, its members and portfolio companies in helping refugees to access jobs in the UK. We hope that our network of GPs, LPs, professional advisers, and portfolio companies will provide refugees with opportunities to access jobs, in any part of the UK they choose to settle in. We have also reached out to a consortium of businesses who are looking to centralise a place for refugees to find jobs. If your firm has any refugee supporting initiatives, we would be keen to hear about them and share them with other members.

One way to support Ukrainian refugees into work in the UK is via support for RefuAid, a leading charity getting refugees and asylum seekers into work in the UK commensurate to their skills and experience.

RefuAid support for the three main barriers facing refugees trying to restart their lives in the UK:

  1. English language tuition. RefuAid has partnered with 90 private for-profit English language schools in the UK who provide RefuAid students with free tuition for as long as they require on structured courses between 16-32 hours a week. RefuAid pay for travel, course materials and up to 2 exam attempts as well as wraparound casework for the student.
  2. Finance and requalification. RefuAid provides character-based, interest-free loans of up to £10,000 for internationally trained refugees to pay for UK accreditation and re-qualification, allowing people to return to employment in their prior professional field.
  3. Specialist employment advice and placements. The RefuAid placement programme works directly with employers to place RefuAid clients who are employment-ready into their first full-time job in the UK.

What they need: RefuAid has spent time with Ukrainian refugees in Poland to understand their needs when they arrive in the UK. They have scaled up their language course provision to meet these needs and are looking for companies to sponsor 1-50 placements at a cost of £2.5k each. This will pay for the travel, course materials, 2 exam attempts and wraparound casework for students. They are also looking for companies to offer placements or full-time work to refugees who have completed their scheme.

If you would like to get involved, please contact Mia Forti.


Tax and NIC treatment of employees relocating

The Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW) recently published guidance on HMRC’s modifications to tax and national insurance contributions (NIC) rules for displaced employees. It provides updates on tax residency, employees coming to work in the UK from Russia, Belarus, or Ukraine, and employees working in those countries temporarily returning to work in the UK. Read the guidance here.

PE/VC firms/investors and portfolio businesses

Sanctions overview and further information

The Russian Federation’s invasion of Ukraine is driving rapid and substantial change across international sanctions regimes. The BVCA has prepared a brief overview of what sanctions are, how they work and how they might affect private equity and venture capital firms (including useful links to UK, US, EU and UN sources for the latest official information). More information is available here. The BVCA is also participating in the Russia Financial Sanctions Implementation Senior Group, a new Government, regulator, and industry forum on sanctions implementation issues.


Fund valuations

The IPEV Board has published a press release on estimating fair value at 31 March 2022, taking into account the war in Ukraine and the current geopolitical and macroeconomic environment. More information is available here.


CBI Ukraine hub

The CBI hub brings together insights and resources for businesses on sanctions, supply chain issues humanitarian support and more. More information is available here.


National Security and Investment Act (NSI Act)

The BVCA policy page on the NSI Act provides a summary on the new requirements and links to our work. More information is available here.


NCSC and CPNI Secure Innovation guidance for investors and startups

The National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) and the Centre for the Protection of National Infrastructure (CPNI) launched the Secure Innovation package of guidance in 2021 as a joint campaign to support investors and CEOs in emerging technology. The guidance for companies highlights the importance of conducting due diligence on any proposed investor (including entities of any consortia) to determine whether there are any security concerns. The guidance also includes examples of what happens when things go wrong. For example the implications of involvement of other investors that could inhibit future fundraising or sale of the company because of legal, ethical or compliance issues, particularly in relation to sanctions, the National Security and Investment Act or export control? More information is available here. Please share this guidance with your entrepreneur networks.


UK Economic Crime Act affects overseas entities holding UK land

A new Economic Crime Act 2022 became law on 15 March. As well as introducing a range of general economic crime powers, the Act will have a significant impact on overseas entities owning UK land. These will need to register with Companies House and provide details of beneficial owners holding 25% or more of their shares or voting rights. Overseas entities registered as the proprietor of UK land before the new rules come into force will need to register within six months, as will those disposing of land during the six-month transition period. Affected firms should seek advice.

How the private capital community is helping

Industry statement and call for donations

The BVCA, alongside Invest Europe and other European associations, has published a statement condemning the attack on Ukraine and outlining our support for the country and its people. The BVCA supports the call on our industry to donate to the International Red Cross and encourages all 700+ of our members to do so via this link.

Further information

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION PLEASE CONTACT THE BVCA

 +44 (0)20 7492 0400

 bvca@bvca.co.uk