‘Can-do attitude’ makes Newcastle hub for small businesses

Newcastle is the only town or city in the North East to make the list

Newcastle has emerged as one of the country's leading lights when it comes to small businesses.

Research compiled by iwoca looked into the top 25 towns and cities in the UK for small and medium enterprise (SME) jobs.

Ranks were drawn based on average wage, commute, job density, house price and growth of the number of small businesses.

In general, the North East struggled in the rankings, with only Newcastle appearing in the top 25.

Newcastle placed fifth, scoring high on the shortness of the average commute and the growth of small businesses in the city since 2016.

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People that live in Newcastle spend on average 22 minutes commuting between work and home, compared to 50 minutes in some parts of London such as Richmond.

Between 2016 and 2021, the number of small businesses in Newcastle increased by 49%, iwoca citing the city's diverse major economic output in science, finance, retail, education, tourism, and nightlife as reasons why.

Glasgow topped the charts, with Manchester and Derby making up the top three.

Liverpool came in fourth place, just above Newcastle.

With its high house prices and long commute times, London did not appear within the Top 25.

Christoph Rieche, iwoca’s CEO and co-founder said: “The pandemic has fundamentally changed the life choices we make.

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Christoph Rieche

"It has changed the way we work, where we want to be based and has made many people across the country consider if their current career or company they work for is the right one for them.

“The big corporations grab the headlines and have the profile, but it’s the small businesses who are making this country tick.

"It's really fantastic to see Newcastle featured so highly in the top spots for SME jobs. Britain’s thriving small businesses can be found in all corners of this country, creating jobs that make a real difference to communities, supporting the growth of local economies.”

Chris Matthews, Founder and CEO of Newcastle based weight loss therapy business – Alevere and Silverlink Clinics: “We’re a small business that’s dedicated to fighting obesity in the UK.

Chris Matthews

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"My motivation for starting Silverlink Clinics was simply to help people not be as miserable as I was when I weighed over 20 stone.

“Newcastle is the ideal location for Alevere and Silverlink Clinics for a variety of reasons, including the strength of the region’s universities, access to high-quality and skilled talent, and high-quality road, rail and air transport links.

"The medically supervised weight loss treatment we offer benefits from Newcastle University's position as a centre of innovation in dietary health.

"Generally, there is a can-do attitude to business along with a great environment, both for work and leisure, Newcastle really ticks all the boxes. We feel proud and fortunate to be part of the Newcastle business community.”