Region named hotspot for start-up businesses

The West Midlands remains a leading location for start-up companies, defying challenges to business confidence posed by the coronavirus pandemic.

Birmingham was the UK’s regional start-up capital for a seventh year running, with 18,394 new enterprises starting life in the city throughout 2020.

It was the highest volume of start-ups outside London, and a 26.8 rise on numbers recorded in 2019.

The figures are the latest in an annual study from think tank Centre for Entrepreneurs.

This year’s findings also ranked Sandwell and Wolverhampton high with the city’s registrations increased by more than 30 per cent from the previous year.

Sandwell was 12th with 4,745 – a 49.2 per cent increase – and Wolverhampton 35th with 2,915, up 30.8 per cent.

Although nationwide lockdown restrictions impacted the rate of formations across the UK, the West Midlands – alongside London – had the strongest recovery of any region, recording 62 per cent growth in June.

Neil Rami, chief executive at the West Midlands Growth Company – the official promotion agency charged with attracting investment and jobs to the region – explained: “Amid the testing economic uncertainties of the last year, these latest figures demonstrate the robustness of the West Midlands’s creative and innovative entrepreneurial landscape. It is encouraging to see Birmingham uphold its leading reputation as a thriving and vibrant hub of invention for a seventh year in a row.

“Despite the prevailing challenges faced by businesses, we hope this year’s Coventry City of Culture programme and the 2022 Birmingham Commonwealth Games will inspire more ambitious entrepreneurs to explore how the West Midlands can elevate their ideas to the next level.”

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