East Midlands

An area for expansion-stage entrepreneurs

The East Midlands ranks eighth amongst UK regions for number of high-growth companies – it’s home to 200, slightly less than its neighbour the West Midlands (271), and ahead of Scotland (171), the North East (97), Wales (77) and Northern Ireland (36).

The region has the lowest ratio of private equity-backed companies per 1,000 companies of any UK region, at 0.11, or 23 companies. The number of companies receiving venture capital investment is also low – just three – although this has only decreased by one since last year’s research. The value of venture capital is, likewise, low at just £1 million, but consistent with last year’s research.

200: Number of high-growth companies
£38m: Amount of expansion funding invested

It’s a different story when it comes to expansion funding, however, which is buoyant: although just seven companies received expansion funding in this year’s research, the value of this funding is relatively high at £38 million, and has more than doubled since last year’s research, when it amounted to £14 million.

This is at odds with the national picture, in which venture capital and expansion funding have both decreased since last year’s research, but is reflected in the findings for the West Midlands, which saw £4 million of venture capital investment, but £79 million of expansion investment.

Key findings

National data offers a conflicted snapshot of entrepreneurship, while regional data proffers a promise of diversifying new business activity. London and the South East remain strong incubators, and the North’s entrepreneurial growth is strong. 

Entrepreneurs index

A barometer of the entrepreneurial environment and activity in the UK. This, the ninth volume, focuses on three main indicators: start-up activity, growth of new business and exits of young enterprises.