UK start-up activity up by almost 20%

The number of businesses launched in Britain this year is almost 20% higher than in 2010, according to a new report from Creditsafe.

The study found that more than 470,000 new companies will have been started by the end of 2011 – a significant increase on the 400,000 founded over the previous 12 months.

Over a third of this year’s new companies (160,000) have been set up in London, making it the epicentre of Britain’s start-up community.

Other key hubs of activity include the South East, with 60,715 start-ups, and the North West, with 46,000. In terms of cities, Birmingham, Manchester and Guildford were found to have the highest number of start-ups outside the capital.

The study’s authors noted that around 16,000 of the new businesses will go bust by the end of the year. However, those behind the research were optimistic about their findings.

David Knowles, business development director at Creditsafe, said: “This year has been difficult but the entrepreneurial spirit of the Great British public is alive and kicking. While there has been a higher number of business insolvencies this year, the number of new businesses set up over the last two years has also grown steadily.

“Overall, growth in the UK business population has actually accelerated in 2011.”


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