NEW figures show that more new businesses were established in Worcestershire during 2017 than in any previous year – in contrast to the national trend which saw an overall reduction in new company formations.
In terms of new companies, 7,804 were registered in the county compared to 6,602 in 2016.
Worcestershire is also the best performing county in the UK for growth in the total number of registered companies – 38,764 up from 33,436 at the end of 2016, which equates to 15.9 per cent growth.
The five-year picture was equally bright – with 50 per cent growth in company numbers over the period.
The statistics come from the Inform Direct Review of UK Company Formations using data from Companies House and the Office for National Statistics.
Bromsgrove formed the most new businesses (4,880), followed by Wychavon (897), Worcester (561) and the Malvern Hills district (384).
While a lot of formations were concentrated at a few addresses – often a sign of an agent setting up limited companies for contractors – there was a strong performance across the county.
John Korchak, director of operations at Inform Direct, said: “These record figures for new company formations during 2017 show that Worcestershire continues to be a particularly fertile ground for entrepreneurs and new business ventures.
“The results buck the national trend which saw an overall reduction in the number of new company formations compared to 2016.
“This slowdown could be attributed, at least in part, to ongoing political uncertainty and concern in the business community over the impact of Brexit.
“Worcestershire also appears to provide a supportive environment for existing businesses as it is the best performing county in the UK for growth in the total number of registered companies.”
Across the UK as a whole, there was a reduction in the number of new company formations – 634,116 compared with 664,720 in 2016.