High Growth Small Startups Boom In London & Manchester

In a new index, published by Octopus Investments, London and Manchester top the list for the best hub spots in the UK for high-growth small businesses (HGSBs)

Octopus Investments’ Urban Hub League Table sets out which towns and cities in the UK are the most HGSB-friendly. The Table ranks 32 in all, according to a range of factors, from connectivity and access to finance to talent; all of which have been cited as being the most important to small businesses when they are trying to scale up and grow.

The capital city secured the top position, with Manchester coming in at second place. These two cities were then followed by Cardiff and Edinburgh, with Belfast, Northern Ireland’s capital city, coming much further down the rankings at 21st place due to its pool skills ranking and demography.

The index also showed that the Northern Powerhouse, the Government’s proposal to boost the North of England’s economic growth, is, when it comes to supporting HGSBs, seemingly divided East to West . In the index’s top five for transport links, strong job creation forecast and affordable locations costs, both Manchester and Liverpool feature. However, Middlesbrough, Hull, Newcastle and York are all placed in the bottom ten.


Octopus Investments’ League Table closely echoes the results detailed in the Startups Cities Index 2015 from last year, which ranked the UK’s top 25 cities according to where it was best to start up a new business, excluding London. This index also used a range of metrics such as connectivity, transports links and access to investment in order to rank the cities.

CEO of Octopus Investments, Simon Rogerson, detailed his excitement at the index’s findings, stating that he was pleased to see that cities across the UK were prepared and had the “potential to support the next generation of HGSBs and benefit from the HGSB effect.”

Rogerson added that it was essential for the UK’s cities to support these businesses  because they “are vital to our economic prosperity.”