Sunday 7 June 2020 4:53 pm

Exclusive: Islington is the number one hotspot for new UK startups

Islington is the UK hotspot for new startups, creating 18,590 new businesses in the last year, according to figures from UHY Hacker Young.

Startups are turning to Islington as a cheaper alternative to the Silicon Roundabout, a popular tech hub in North-East London.

Read more: Government doubles investment for coronavirus startups

Islington overlaps parts of the Kings Cross redevelopment, Dalston and on the fringe of the City in Clerkenwell.

The Tech City district, coined the Silicon Roundabout, has become one of Europe’s leading hubs and placed second with 15,390 new businesses created in the last year.

As well as housing new digital startups and venture capital investors, it has also come to attract giants Microsoft and Google, who have set up bases in the district. However, the rapid rise in popularity has meant the demand for office space has outstripped supply. It has driven up the previously low rents, which had been a main selling point of the area.

Digital startups are therefore starting to flock to neighbouring borough Islington.

These include Ogury, a mobile marketing business which was founded in the borough and now has 18 offices across Europe and the US. Automata, another startup which has been working on a desktop robotic arm, is also based in Islington.

UHY Hacker Young said that startups are looking elsewhere for cheaper areas out of central London.

Croydon placed tenth on its list, solidifying its place as an up-and-coming hub, accounting for 2,540 new businesses. It has cheaper office space, whilst still having good connections to central London, and has become increasingly popular with fintechs.

Martin Jones, partner at UHY Hacker Young, said: “If tech companies do become more cost conscious after the coronavirus lockdown ends, then we may see an increasing number choosing to base themselves in those areas such as Croydon, that offer growing tech credentials but also lower rents to save costs following the pandemic.”

He added: “However, a clear north-south divide remains with new start-ups still being heavily concentrated in London, accounting for seven of the top ten areas for new business generation.”

The UK’s most popular areas for new startups:

AreaNew business registrations
Old Street/City Road15,390
Leicester Square/Covent Garden12,820
East Docklands3,980
Canary Wharf2,800

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