The importance of small businesses to the UK economy is expected to keep growing. The top 10 UK cities are forecast to contribute £217bn to the UK economy by 2020 according to a report commissioned by the Centre for Economics and Business Research (CEBR) in collaboration with Hampshire Trust Bank.
With SMEs currently contributing £196bn, the latest figure of £217bn is representative of an overall 11% increase in the contribution delivered by small businesses across the country.
Leeds and Manchester will likely see the fastest growth, expected to boost their value by 15%, closely followed by Bristol, which is predicted to increase by 14% over the same period.
London is home to the largest number of SMEs, due to this the capital boasts the largest contribution to the economy, set to rise from £149bn to £164bn by 2020, 76% of the total that SMEs contribute to the economy.
Mark Sismey-Durrant, chief executive at Hampshire Trust Bank stated:
“Our report demonstrates the critical importance of SMEs as the engine room of the economy. Their sizeable contribution to the fortunes of the UK economy – growing 27% of total business contribution by 2020 – cannot be ignored. Our research with CEBR should be a source of optimism for the government and for employers as the strong future growth predicted suggests significant opportunity for investors, business owners and their employees.”
“As the government prepares for the first Autumn statement following the decision to leave the EU, I urge them to keep the spotlight on smaller companies by creating conditions which will support their continued growth”
Managing economist at CEBR, Nina Skero said that: “This study demonstrates there is a positive story to be told about the UK’s SMEs and it is encouraging to see such strong growth being mirrored outside the capital. We expect the importance of SMEs to the country’s economy to increase in the coming years and hope that this research will inspire business leaders across the UK to invest in their growth strategies.”