Leicester named one of the top 5 cities in the UK to start a business in 2018

Research gathered by Paymentsense, Europe's leading merchant service provider, has shown that Leicester is one of the best cities in the UK for entrepreneurs looking to start a small business in 2018.

Leicester is ranked in the top 5, with the data focusing on the city’s strong heritage in textiles and shoes – and how industry still plays a huge role in the city’s economy, along with engineering and retail.

As part of the study, Paymentsense carried out extensive research on the business climate in each city, looking into business demography, the UK labour market, and the cost of living for the past 5 years.

The data highlights how Leicester is famous for its cultural diversity and how the bustling city centre attracts locals and tourists alike.

The data for Leicester also suggests the following key stats:

  • 5-year start-up survival rate: 44.4%
  • Average gross weekly pay: £497.90
  • Self-employed rate: 5.2%
  • Population: 348,300
  • Average utility bill (1 bed flat): £159.50
  • How ‘rich’ is Leicester? £166m earned by working professionals each week

The University of Leicester is proud to be supporting start-ups in Leicester both originating locally and from the University. In the last 9 years over 5,000 of our students have engaged in enterprise activities and start-up programmes outside of their studies, resulting in hundreds of Leicester students and graduates starting a new businesses with an above average survival rate and an average of 2 jobs created per business.

The Leicester Innovation Hub, part-funded by European Regional Development Fund, is building on this success by offering dedicated incubation/start-up support to even more students and graduates. We are now looking for more students and graduates interested in developing their ideas to apply for up to £1500 worth of support to start-up. If you are a student or graduate looking for help to develop your business ideas please send your details to studententerprise@le.ac.uk and we will be in touch.

Thanks to grant funding recently received from the UK Space Agency the Hub is providing an exciting opportunity space entrepreneurship for pre start-ups in the space sector to access industry specific pre-incubation business services. This includes entrepreneur and academic expertise from the space sector, flexible workspace and pre-incubation start-up workshops and coaching.

European Regional Development Fund

The Leicester Innovation Accelerator in the Innovation Hub project is receiving up to £2.5m of funding from the England European Regional Development Fund as part of the European Structural and Investment Funds Growth Programme 2014-2020. The Department for Communities and Local Government (and in London the intermediate body Greater London Authority) is the Managing Authority for European Regional Development Fund.

Established by the European Union, the European Regional Development Fund helps local areas stimulate their economic development by investing in projects which will support innovation, businesses, create jobs and local community regenerations. For more information visit the website.