Number of private businesses at record high of 5.5 million
The number of private sector businesses in the UK has hit a record high of 5.5 million, according to the latest official figures.
The Business Population Estimates show that the UK had a million more small businesses at the start of 2016 than in 2010.
It also had 4,000 more medium-sized businesses and 900 more large businesses. The combined figures represent an overall increase of 23%.
Small and medium-sized firms account for at least 99% of businesses in every main industry sector. The total number of businesses in London has also reached 1 million for the first time and the number of businesses employing people across the country has risen for the third year running.
Establishing and developing a business can be exciting but it also presents many challenges. It’s vital to carry out extensive research to make sure you progress in a sustainable way. You need to know your potential market but you also need to consider the legal structure of your business.
For example, you may start out as a sole trader but as you develop there might be advantages in creating a limited company or perhaps entering into a partnership.
The correct approach will depend on the type of business you operate. You may also need to consider employment contracts if you need to take on staff, and leasing arrangements if you need premises.
Good legal advice at the outset can prevent mistakes that could prove costly in the future.
Speaking about the latest figures, Business and Energy Secretary Greg Clark said: “Britain’s businesses are the heroes of our economic revival and it is great to see the number of businesses rise by over a million since 2010.
“Our job creators don’t always get the praise and respect they deserve but we should be proud of our entrepreneurs, business leaders and innovators. The government is committed to ensuring Britain builds on its success and is the best place to start and grow a business.”
Please contact Sarah Liddiard if you would like advice about the legal aspects of starting a new business.