Start-ups needing space

The demand for flexible workspace rose by nearly a quarter last year on 2014 rates and a lot of the need was for one or two-desk spaces, which is indicative of start-ups, while interestingly, the strongest demand was from the large cities outside London.

According to the data, Liverpool came top of the list of entrepreneurial cities, followed by Birmingham and Manchester, all of which, proportionately speaking, are out-performing the capital.

Instant Offices, which produced the report, used new data from Companies House to create a map of the UK’s start-ups over the past two years and compare it to the population size of each city. The research found that key cities were clearly ahead of the UK’s start-up average.

For example, since the population of Liverpool is 440,000, with 57,323 new firms starting in the past two years, the entrepreneurial population percentage is 16. Birmingham’s percentage worked out at 14.5 and Manchester’s 14, whereas the average for the UK is 2 per cent and London’s is 7.5 per cent.

As a spokesman for Instant Offices said, small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are hungry for space in these cities, with enquiries for flexible workspace up almost 40 per cent in the surrounding areas and up 31 per cent for the UK as a whole.

However, he added that while enquiries for flexible space were up, the growth in non-flexible space only rose by 15 per cent, which suggests that many of these firms want space to grow but are not yet ready to commit to leased offices.

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