24 December 2013

2013: the year of the start-ups

Following the news that over 500,000 start-ups were created in 2013, the government has announced further measures to help small businesses thrive.

It seems 2013 has been the year of the start-up business, with more than 500,000 being created over past 12 months.

According to Startup Britain’s Daily Tracker, 514,717 businesses have been launched since January and the final figure is expected to hit 523,410 by the end of the year. The tracker, which takes note of the number of businesses registered with Companies House, was created three years ago and this is the first time that the number of start-ups has passed the half a million mark.

In 2012 484,224 businesses were created while 2011 saw 440,600 start trading. Official figures from the Government show that 95% of all companies in the UK are micro or small businesses, making them crucial to the national economy. They also employ more than seven million people.

Emma Jones, co-founder of StartUp Britain says: “We’ve been looking at these figures carefully for three years since the campaign began and it’s clear the UK’s start-up community is fit and healthy – and shows no sign of abating.”

Government initiative to help small businesses

Earlier this month, Enterprise Minister Matthew Hancock announced the government’s measures which are aimed at helping small businesses thrive. Small Business: GREAT Ambition is an initiative which is designed to make it easier for start-ups and other small firms to fulfil their potential. It includes:

  • Broadband vouchers
    Up to £100 million of broadband vouchers will be given to small firms based in 22 UK cities. The vouchers will be worth up to £3,000 each and are intended to help businesses get high speed connections.
  • Clearer energy deals
    The Government has made an agreement with the major energy firms to make their energy deals fairer and more transparent with limits put on back billing. It will also be easier for businesses to switch suppliers in the future so they can choose the most cost-effective contracts.
  • Access to public sector contracts
    It will be easier and simpler for small businesses to potentially win contracts from the public sector.

Mr Hancock says: “Small businesses are the lifeblood of the British economy and responsible for nearly half the job creation in the UK. That’s why we are removing barriers to growth and supporting them, so that they can create jobs and compete in the global race.”