As business numbers hit record numbers confidence is key to success says FSB

New data from the ONS shows that the total employment in small to medium sized businesses was 15.6 million; 60 per cent of all private sector employment in the UK.

Overall, the number of small to medium sized businesses has increased by over 50 per cent to 1.9 million since 2000 and the number of small to medium sized employers by 201,000. However, small to medium sized share of employment has remained stable over time at around 60 per cent of total private sector employment.

Commenting on the statistics John Allan, national chairman for the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) said: “the increase in small business numbers shows the entrepreneurial spark in the UK is “alive and well”.

“Today’s statistics show an annual boost of 146,000 new small businesses to the UK economy, bringing the total number to a record 5.35 million. It underlines the importance of small businesses as creators of employment and growth.

“The key is to continue to encourage people to take the plunge and set up their own business by providing business support that will help them grow and meet their aspirations. Small business confidence will be crucial in driving the economy and job creation. To do this, they need further reassurance from government and policymakers that they will back them, rewarding their risk-taking while minimising the burdens that will hinder their growth,” he added.

James Layfield, CEO of business incubator company Central Working, commented on the data saying: “Small businesses are delivering almost half of all private sector employment opportunities, driving optimism and injecting creativity and innovation into the UK economy. It’s important that we don’t lose sight of this community’s contribution, as their impact on job and wealth creation cannot be underestimated,” he said.

Layfield added it’s clear to see entrepreneurs are thriving due to the increase in turnover: “This is a testament to the quality of small businesses being established in the UK, their ideas and people in particular, and also to the wealth of resources on offer to assist this community. This is the era of the growing business, and it’s vital that we keep up the momentum to encourage aspiring entrepreneurs to take the leap.”