Entrepreneurial Lancashire launches record number of businesses

Lancashire has smashed the record for the number of new businesses launched in the area in a single year, according to new research.

Lancashire roseStatistics, compiled by informdirect.co.uk, reveal that there were 9,788 companies formed in 2014, up from a previous best of 9,138.

This brings the total number of businesses operating in the region to a high of 60,973.

There are now 5.7% more active companies than there were a year ago and 32% more than there were five years ago.

Henry Catchpole, CEO of Inform Direct, said: “This is clearly an area where fledgling firms are flourishing and where people are starting to make their dreams a reality in the word of business.”

There were 1,208 new companies formed in Fylde, followed by 1,185 in Preston, 1,087 in Blackpool and 1,060 in Blackburn with Darwen.

Last year in the UK as a whole, 586,784 new businesses were registered with Companies House taking the total number to a record high of 3,509,084. Private limited companies made up over 95% of all formations.

And, while Britain has long been famed as an enterprising nation, the recent explosion in start-up activity has been exceptional.

Mr Catchpole suggests that there are three complementary factors fueling this growth.

First, there is the ease and speed with which a company can be started – usually within hours and generally for less than £20.

Secondly, many companies can successfully operate from home and need little more than a website before they can start trading.

Thirdly, there are improved channels for accessing capital.

Crowdfunding is a good example of this, making it easier for new companies to get early stage backing and therefore encouraging would-be entrepreneurs to give it a go. In bringing together data available from Companies House and the Office of National Statistics, Inform Direct has built up a truly unique picture of how many businesses are now operating across the UK.