Martin Cuthbert
Bdaily Business News

Yorkshire sees major rise in entrepreneurial activity

The second report from Barclays looking at the entrepreneurial landscape in the UK and Ireland shows that there has been a revival in entrepreneurial activity in Yorkshire, as the number of companies with shares changing hands increased by 19% in the second half of 2012 from the second half in 2011.

According to the latest Barclays Entrepreneurs Index, 1,309 growing companies in Yorkshire had shareholder changes in the second half of 2012, compared to 1,098 in the second half of 2011, making it the fifth-biggest region for entrepreneurial activity.

Despite this rise in entrepreneurial activity, the report also reveals a fall in the financial health of growing companies with shares changing hands in Yorkshire. The average profit of these companies with shares changing hands in the second half of 2012 was £0.7m, which was down by 12.5% year on year from £0.8m.

The Barclays Entrepreneurs Index is the second in an ongoing series, which tracks one component of the entrepreneurial lifecycle, examining shareholder changes of growing businesses with turnovers of £5m-£200 million.

Taking data from Companies House, the report works on the basis that the driving force behind a partial or full change of shareholding in a growing company is likely to be a liquidity event, triggered by individuals selling or transferring their stakes in businesses.

Bolstered by Sheffield’s steel industry heritage and a focus on advanced manufacturing research, the industrial sector in Yorkshire saw the most entrepreneurial activity over this period. At 47%, Yorkshire was the region with the highest increase in the number of industrial companies with shares changing hands, compared to the previous year, affecting 587 companies.

Martin Cuthbert, director, Barclays Wealth and Investment Management in Yorkshire, commented on the report findings: “Since our inaugural Entrepreneurs Index report last autumn, we have watched with interest how the picture for business activity in Yorkshire, as well as the whole of UK and Ireland, has shifted. It is encouraging to see that active companies have shown not only resilience in the face of instability, but even growth in certain sectors.”

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