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UK Politics

Big Tory donors linked to welfare-to-work contracts


A City firm set up by two substantial Conservative Party donors owned a training company which won £73m in contracts under the Government's welfare-to-work programme, it emerged last night.

Sovereign Capital, created in 2001 by John Nash, Ryan Robson and three others, for eight years owned Employment and Skills Group (ESG), which was sold to an investment bank for an undisclosed amount last week.

Mr Nash and his wife Caroline have donated £182,500 to the Tories since 2006, while Mr Robson has given £267,866 since 2003.

ESG won two contracts in the West Midlands for the Work Programme, under which private companies are paid by results to get the unemployed into work.

There is no suggestion that any Tory ministers intervened to ensure the firm won contracts.