London and Manchester ranked best hubs for high growth small businesses

Octopus Investments has published a 'league table' of the UK towns and cities with the best access to finance, talent and connectivity for fast-growth firms

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London and Manchester have been named as the best UK hubs for high-growth small businesses (HGSBs) in a new index published by Octopus Investments today.

The Urban Hub League Table has ranked the 32 towns and cities that are most HGSB -friendly using factors such as access to finance, talent and connectivity; the factors that small businesses often cite as the most important to them when scaling and growing.

With London ranked at the top spot, Manchester came second, followed by Cardiff and Edinburgh while Northern Ireland capital Belfast featured much further down the index at 21 due to poor demography and skills ranking.

According to the index, the Northern Powerhouse appears to be divided East to West in its support for HGSBs. Liverpool joined Manchester in the top five cities based on transport links, affordable location costs and strong job creation forecasts, yet Hull, Middlesbrough, York and Newcastle were ranked in the bottom 10.

The league table echoed findings from the Startups Cities Index 2015, which used a host of metrics such as start-up rates, connectivity, transport links, and access to investment, to rank the UK’s top 25 cities to start a business outside of London.

Simon Rogerson, CEO of Octopus Investments, commented:

“It is exciting to see that there are towns and cities right across the UK that have the potential to support the next generation of HGSBs and benefit from the HGSB effect. These businesses are vital to our economic prosperity and there is untapped opportunity in every corner of the UK.”


Written by:
Henry Williams headshot
Henry has been writing for since 2015, covering everything from business finance and web builders to tax and red tape. He’s also acted as project lead on many of our industry-renowned annual indexes, including Startups 100 and Business Ideas, and created a number of the site’s popular how to guides.
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