A growing number of companies with private equity backing

Wales has the second-lowest number of high-growth companies in the UK at 77, though this number is significantly higher than the place with the lowest number, Northern Ireland (12).

Interestingly, Wales has the highest ratio of private equity-backed companies per 1,000 companies of any UK region, at 0.41 – higher than London (0.38), Scotland (0.27), the North West (0.27) and the South East (0.25). The number of private equity-backed companies in Wales has increased from 40 in last year’s research to 50.

77: Number of high-growth companies
£9m: Amount of VC invested

While the number of companies receiving venture capital funding has also increased, from 23 in last year’s research to 32, the value of this investment hasn’t increased, but is stable year-on-year at £9 million.

Although the research shows that, at a national level, M&A activity has increased this year, a relatively low proportion of this involved Welsh companies: 13 out of 505 M&A deals nationally.

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.