Britain’s hottest startups grew six times the rate of UK businesses

Lynsey Barber
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Startups are growing at a faster rate

Britain’s hottest startups are fuelling economic growth and job creation, growing at six times the rate of the rest of the UK’s businesses.

The Future Fifty, a group of the country’s brightest and most promising high-growth tech businesses identified by Tech City UK, increased their workforce by 30 per cent in the last year, compared to the national average of just over five per cent.

The 50-strong list includes FinTech star Transferwise, online luxury shopping firm Farfetch, both now valued at $1bn, video AdTech firm Unruly and keyboard app SwiftKey.

Read more: UK Tech startups will create 20,000 jobs this year

“Growth stage companies are vital to the UK’s tech ecosystem. As a leading source of innovation and jobs, it is important that we continue to attract and support the world’s most promising companies to grow and scale their businesses in the UK,” said Future Fifty director Philipp Stoeckl.

Including another 12 former members, the group of businesses employ more than 17,000 people in total around the world. In the last year, Future Fifty companies raised a combined £433m in funding.

Former members of the Future Fifty include IPO success stories Just Eat, Zoopla Horizon Discovery and AO World, which raised more than £1bn combined when they floated.

The cohort of startups hired software developers more than any other position, with more than half of jobs ads searching for them over the last 12 months. That was followed by customer service positions (11 per cent) and sales (nine per cent).

The figures come in the week that the capital cemented its position as the tech capital of Europe in London Technology Week and the research showed the UK has produced 17 unicorns - companies valued at more than £1bn - a number which is only expected grow.

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