London leads the UK in creation of startups

London continued to dominate the startup landscape in 2019, as the UK hit a record level for a second year in a row.

The number of startups in London increased 2.4 per cent to 221,373 companies, a substantial portion of the 681,704 businesses created in 2019.

Data from the Centre for Entrepreneurs’ annual startup index released on Monday showed that there were 24 startups for every 1,000 citizens in the capital.

“It is encouraging that despite a politically turbulent year in which business confidence hit new lows, business formations continued to set records” said Matt Smith, director of policy and research at the Centre for Entrepreneurs.

Read more: Tech startups resilient on hiring potential despite political turmoil

Camden topped the table with 24,403 new startups, representing a 3.48 per cent rise on the year before. It was closely followed by Hackney, which increased its number of startups 13.54 per cent from 21,077 in 2018 to 23,930 in 2019.

Islington came in third place in the index with 17,624 startups, with Westminster in fourth, despite its number of new startups falling 1.85 per cent to 16,971.

A 21.95 per cent fall in new businesses meant Birmingham trailed the four London boroughs with just 14,509 new startups.

The number of new startups in the City of London fell 12.28 per cent to 7,134 in 2019, but the Square Mile still ranked first per capita.

Over 45,229 tech startups were launched in 2019, totalling five new tech startups launched every hour. Of these, 17,401 were registered in London.

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Tech startups accounted for 13 per cent and 12 per cent of the new businesses in Camden and Islington respectively in 2019, above the local authority average of 7.5 per cent.

London’s tech scene has thrived in recent years but the Centre for Entrepreneurs’ data indicates that Brighton and Bournemouth had a higher proportion of tech companies among their new businesses than London tech hubs such as Camden.

Smith said the results indicated that “entrepreneurial spirit is well and truly embedded across the UK with entrepreneurs continuing to turn their ideas into action”.