Last year, Workspace Group commissioned the Cambridge Economic Associates to conduct a survey on the businesses based in their centres. Professor Peter Tyler, an urban and regional economist at Cambridge University, with an extensive track record in consulting for the public and private sectors, lead the research of 1,000 Workspace-based businesses.
In the last few years, the term 'small and medium-sized enterprises' has often been thought inadequate to describe the many businesses in Britain. At Workspace, we like to characterise the fast-growing, high net-worth businesses based in our business centres as NGCs (new and growing companies). And commissioning this kind of research is part of an initiative lead by Workspace to better understand their customer base and their needs, particularly in terms of finance and their barriers to growth.
The research was presented at the inaugural NGC Forum, a conference about new and growing companies (NGCs) powering the London economy, which was hosted by Workspace in the Churchill Rooms at the Houses of Parliament in January 2015. Here's an introduction to the NGC Forum.
30% of the thousand businesses surveyed qualify as recent startups as they have been set up in the last four years. Almost two thirds are from business and professional services as well as the creative industries. Over half of the businesses are a single-site company rather than headquarters or branches for businesses.
91% grew last year while 22% have grown by over a quarter.
On average, 75% of NGCs employ between 2 and 9 employees. This is a contribution of 38,400 jobs to the London market.
According to the survey, 48% see finance as a constraint on growth while 35% saw competition as a difficullty.
London is one of the world’s most innovative and dynamic economies. It is a highly competitive location for doing business and it creates wealth for its inhabitants and the whole of the UK. If London’s economic momentum is to be maintained it is essential that businesses can find good quality premises, qualified workers
NGCs face a host of opportunities and challenges which we'll continue to discuss in the upcoming series of NGC Forums - keep up to date with all the news here and have a look at a short video of the event here. Many thanks to all our panellists and guests. If you'd like to carry on the conversation then please tweet out to @WorkspaceGroup using the hashtag #NGCForum.