Property is UK’s most fundable small business sector

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Real estate and property emerges as UK’s most fundable small business sector, according to lending data

New research from startup and small business finance specialists Access Commercial Finance suggests startup culture may be changing, with rural-based businesses and bricks and mortar firms winning the bulk of small business funding.

Analysis of 833 startup and small business funding applications submitted since July 2016 has revealed:

  • Real estate and property is the most fundable sector for new businesses, with a 17% funding approval rate rate
  • 2% of all funding applications since July 2016 came from real estate and property businesses
  • 8% of all approved loans went to real estate and property businesses
  • Sports, entertainment & media, along with real estate all have a funding approval rate above 10%
  • Based on volume of startup funding applications, Warwickshire, Gloucestershire and Northamptonshire are the most active areas for startup businesses
  • Startups in construction, business services, food and beverage, retail, tech made the most funding applications, accounting for 36% of all funding applications received.

But based on funding approval rates, these were the most fundable sectors.

UK’s five most fundable sectors

Sector

Application success rate

Real Estate

16.67%

Sports

12.50%

Entertainment & Media

11.76%

Automotive

8.33%

Retail & Consumer

3.70%

Startup and new business hotspots

Startups and small businesses based outside of the UK’s large cities made significantly more funding applications as a proportion of their populations.

Traditional startup hotspots London and Manchester saw 9 applications per million residents, and 6 applications per million residents, respectively. But less obvious places like Warwickshire, Northamptonshire, Gloucestershire and North Yorkshire were significantly more active – all with ten or more application per one million residents. 

Place

Startup funding applications per million residents

Warwickshire

22

Northamptonshire

12

Gloucestershire

12

North Yorkshire

10

Oxfordshire

10

London

9

West Yorkshire

9

South Yorkshire

9

Cheshire

9

Tyne And Wear

8

UK Average

5

Matt Haycox (pictured above), a consultant at Access Commercial Finance, believes the lending data tells an exciting story about startup and small business activity in the UK.

“When we picture a startup, we might imagine a group of young graduates in a smart office in Shoreditch or Salford, creating a new app or online business. Our data proves there’s another story to tell too, one where business innovation flourishes away from the big cities and tech hubs and takes place garden offices and converted barns.

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