There is now a record number of businesses in Liverpool city region after a surge of more than 10% in 2021, new data shows. Tony McDonough reports
Liverpool city region saw a 10.5% surge in new businesses formations in 2021, with the number reaching a record high of 83,500.
Across all six boroughs of the city region – Liverpool, Wirral, Sefton, St Helens, Knowsley and Halton – 13,827 new companies were formed during the 12-month period. This was slightly down on the 14,210 businesses formed in 2020.
This took the overall total from 75,580 to 83,500, according to the data from the Inform Direct Review of Company Formations using data from Companies House and the Office for National Statistics.
Liverpool saw the the highest number of new businesses formed (6,413 to 34,983), followed by Wirral (2,337 to 15,778), Sefton (2,160 to 13,902), St Helens (1,322 to 7,326), Knowsley (851 to 5,5643) and Halton (744 to 5,958).
The UK saw 771,617 new businesses formed, compared to 780,760 in 2020. The overall number of UK companies totalled just over 5m, a 3.5% increase on just over 4.8m at the end of 2020. This continues a 10-year trend which shows the number of businesses in the UK doubling in that period.
John Korchak, operations director at Inform Direct, said: “It is excellent news to see that Merseyside has achieved a record high for the number of businesses in the county despite the continuing challenges of the pandemic.
“The retail sector saw the largest number of new companies (2,739) which may be the result of pent-up demand after the lockdowns of 2020 and early 2021 and people looking to spend their income in different ways as a result of widespread restrictions on travel and entertainment. This was followed by construction with 1,672 new incorporations.
“Reaching a new record number of companies demonstrates an active economy with entrepreneurs motivated to invest in new businesses which meet current and emerging demands for goods or services.
“The overall picture for the UK as a whole is also an optimistic one with the total number of companies now exceeding five million for the very first time.”
While company formations grew, the number of dissolutions across the UK – 606,912 during 2021 – hit a record high.
Reasons for this may be that new enterprises set up early in the pandemic may no longer be operating as people have returned to full-time employment or businesses thriving pre-COVID-19 have suffered as behavioural and spending patterns have changed.