The entrepreneurial space in the UK has shown remarkable resilience and vibrancy in 2023. Despite economic pressures, the startup scene has not only sustained but flourished, with almost half a million new businesses being launched across the country. This impressive figure, compiled from Companies House data and other resources by BusinessFinancing.co.uk, show the enduring spirit of British entrepreneurship. We’re excited to see what’s next in 2024. In no particular order, here are 10 of the best UK cities to run a startup this year.
In the heart of the UK, Manchester’s entrepreneurial spirit is thriving more than ever. With a 33.82% increase in new businesses, the city is filled with innovative minds ready to leave their mark. As one of the leading hubs for tech and digital firms, Manchester offers a community where creativity meets opportunity. Ian Wright, Finance Expert at BusinessFinancing.co.uk, shares, “Entrepreneurs up and down the country are showing their willingness to invest their time and energy in bringing their business visions to life”¹.
Coventry stands proud as the year’s most entrepreneurial city, with a 13% hike in business registrations. With an ecosystem supportive of sectors like freight transport and e-commerce, the city boasts a blend of affordable commercial space and a vast talent pool. “As one of the most popular locations for setting up a business in the UK, Coventry has good support systems in place to help entrepreneurs thrive,” notes a representative from Instant Offices².
Cambridge shines as an innovation powerhouse, with a 45.9% rise in new businesses. This city is a beacon for those in tech and life sciences, making it an attractive spot for startups looking for a mix of academic brilliance and commercial acumen. Robin Waite, Business Coach, remarks, “Cambridge is a hub for innovation and entrepreneurship”³.
Despite the high cost of living, London continues to be a melting pot of business activity, launching the highest number of new businesses last year. It’s a city where startups have access to a vast range of industries and a pool of potential customers and investors. London maintains its position as a global city ripe with opportunities for those ready to make their mark⁴.
With a diverse economy and a growing reputation as a startup hub, Birmingham has seen a 9% rise in new business registrations. The city is becoming known as one of Europe’s leading tech and digital business centers, with over 1,000 technology companies choosing to call it home⁵.
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Leeds’s strong and growing economy presents a fertile ground for startups in tech, finance, and retail. The city attracts major companies and provides ample opportunities for new entrepreneurs to launch and grow their ventures⁶.
Liverpool, with its rich history in trade and commerce, is now home to a diverse range of businesses in digital, creative, and life sciences sectors. It’s a city where the past and future of entrepreneurship merge to create a vibrant business scene⁷.
Glasgow’s dynamic creative and cultural scene makes it a magnet for tech and digital businesses. The city is home to some of the best startups in the UK, thanks to its supportive ecosystem and initiatives like CodeBase⁸.
Sheffield stands out as a city with a strong and growing economy, especially in advanced manufacturing and engineering. It has developed a reputation as an innovation hub, with its universities leading in research and development⁹.
Cardiff, the capital of Wales, is bursting with entrepreneurial energy, particularly in the tech and creative sectors. It offers an affordable office space and a talent pool that is attracting many young companies to its vibrant startup scene¹⁰.