Home Finance & Investments North West business numbers rise by 11,000 as start-up boom continues

North West business numbers rise by 11,000 as start-up boom continues

Paul Barber, North West Chair of R3

The number of businesses in the North West rose by nearly 11,000 during 2019, which could indicate that the startup boom is continuing, according to research by insolvency and restructuring trade body R3.

The figures show that the region’s business community saw greater expansion last year than in 2018, when fewer than 8,000 additional businesses were created. However the growth rate fell short of the record years of 2017 and 2016, when business numbers rose by 14,000 and nearly 33,000 respectively.

The number of active businesses in the North West reached over 380,000 in December, a rise of 21 per cent since December 2015. This compares to an increase of 20% for the UK overall during the same period.

Paul Barber, North West Chair of R3 and a partner at Begbies Traynor, says the figures show that start-ups continue to more than make up for the number of firms closing down. “These figures are a celebration of the enterprise culture within the North West. In recent years, we have seen an unprecedented number of new businesses created and, while 2019 didn’t match the peak of a few years ago, it was another strong year for business creation.

“Start-ups create new jobs and prosperity and drive innovation. They help replace declining industries to maintain a competitive economy. However, starting a business is always a risk and inevitably, not all will succeed.

“As we enter a new decade, amidst a period of uncertainty and change, it is critical that we maintain this spirit of enterprise. That means having the right business culture, laws and systems in place to encourage and support start-ups and allow entrepreneurs to recover from business failure. The insolvency profession will continue to play a major part in that.”

The figures are compiled by R3 using Bureau van Dijk’s ‘Fame’ database of UK companies.