Car sharing, science and brewing: The UK's fastest-growing industries revealed

Emma Haslett
Follow Emma
Czechs Have Highest Beer Consumption In World
The UK's brewing industry is flourishing (Source: Getty)

Thinking of starting a business? You could do a lot worse than going into car rental , a new report suggests.

Figures by O2 Business and the Centre of Economic and Business Research suggests the UK's "leasing and rental" sector is one of the fastest-growing industries - driven in part by sharing economy businesses, such as Uber and Airbnb.

The list suggests sub-sectors of that, such as "rental and leasing of cars and light motor vehicles" (sexy) and "rental and leasing of intellectual property", are examples of businesses that could be among the UK's fastest growing in coming years.

Meanwhile, "other professional, scientific and technical activities" - such as environmental consulting and design - comes second in the list of the fastest-growing sectors, followed by, er, management consultancy.


1. Sharing economy
2. Environmental consulting
3. Management consultancy
4. Architecture and engineering
5. Call centres, document preparation
6. Computer games and software
7. Computer and electronics manufacturing
8. Computer programming
9. Brewing and distilling
10. Scientific R&D

Also named among the UK's hot sectors are architecture, publishing (driven by computer games, rather than newspapers...) and "manufacture of beverages", ie. beer and spirits.

On the other hand, the fastest-declining industries include film, manufacturing, postal and courier activities and "water transport", ie. freight.

“It’s encouraging to see the variety of growth industries in the UK, suggesting renewed economic confidence and a vibrant start-up scene," said Ben Dowd, director of O2 Business.

"However, as the report shows, increased innovation and competition can result in some sectors struggling to cope with the pace of change."


1. Motion pictures and music publishing
2. Other manufacturing
3. Postal and courier activities
4. Water transport and ferries
5. Manufacture of products of wood (except furniture)
6. Retail (except of cars)
7. Manufacture of chemicals
8. Manufacture of metals
9. Printing and reproduction of recorded media
10. Broadcast

Related articles