New data reveals that the number of businesses in the UK is now higher than ever before. Increasing by 0.9 per cent between March 2012 and 2013, the total number of businesses has passed its 2008 high.
These figures come from new estimates by the Office for National Statistics (ONS). The data for the ONS' new measure only goes back as far as 2007, and the change to methodology then led to a considerable increase in the count of registered businesses. But as the number crunching methods got changed, the number of enterprises was still on the up. It would hit its peak – and the number of firms would sharply fall – around the time of the financial crisis.
Now with a recovering economy, we've seen the total number of businesses pass that 2008 high of 2161555 to reach 2167580 in March 2013.
Since 2011-2012 the number of companies corporations as a total of UK businesses has risen from 61.9 per cent to 64 per cent, while professional, scientific and technical business types have replaced wholesale and retail to become the most numerous industry group.
London's share of business growth is the most dramatic. The capital hosts 17.2 per cent of the UK's VAT and PAYE businesses, up from 16.7 per cent last year.