Recently named the best place to start a business in the UK, the city of Leeds is definitely making a name for itself. From the the timeless gothic architecture that lines many of the city’s streets, to the constant flow of contemporary new builds, the appeal of this modern powerhouse extends far beyond the city-comber experience and into the world of business. 

Diving in a little deeper, we find out what the fuss is about, looking at the reasons why Leeds could be the perfect base for a budding business..

The Thriving Economy

Leeds City Council proudly highlights the city’s £64.6 billion economy, with a predicted growth of 21% over the next decade. Of all of the UK’s major cities, Leeds has the most diverse economy and has seen unparalleled growth in private sector jobs. With the move of Channel 4 this year following the trend of global businesses such as Burberry, ASDA and Sky Betting & Gaming, the weight of the city as an internationally relevant base is clear.

The Cost of Living

It is no secret that the cost of living in the North of England is less than that in most of the South, particularly when compared to London. For business start-up costs, this theme continues. An extensive analysis of price data concluded last month that  Leeds is the best place to start a business in the UK. Alongside only Liverpool and Cardiff in the £15,000 average annual business launch cost, the perks are undeniable. 

The Diversity

The level of diversity in businesses that call Leeds their home acts as a noteworthy advantage for start-ups. From the thriving financial district, to the developing technology sector, through to a dynamic range of creative industries dotted around the city, the opportunity to collaborate directly with such a variety of companies within a relatively compact city centre is significant.

In particular, platforms like Barclays Eagle Lab have invested in growing cities across the UK, including at Avenue HQ’s East Parade site, seeking to identify and nurture high-growth small to medium businesses. The access to funding, support and expertise that this offers, within the UK’s most exciting city for speedy business development, is priceless.

The Talent

Home to 5 universities, the output of graduates within the Leeds area is rather unique. Whether a business is looking for keen interns, or to maximize on the benefits of recruiting new graduates, the availability of eager young talent is impressive. The low rent prices and high quality of living ranking that Leeds maintains has a hugely positive impact on the tendency for graduates to remain in the city post-university.

The Connections

Leeds’ transport links beyond Yorkshire is undeniably impressive, to reach London via train in two hours, Manchester in around one, and Edinburgh around the three mark. There is no fear of feeling detached or isolated from the UK’s external business realm. For international interests, Leeds Bradford Airport is a fast-developing, asset to the city. Offering flights to over seventy destinations, inside and outside of Europe, it is no surprise that the city’s level of foreign investment has increased tremendously over the past two years.

The Fun Side

Financial and corporate considerations aside, the flow of life in Leeds and all that it has to offer is endlessly appealing. It’s industrial history remains at the heart of the city. Stunning ex-mills, factories and storehouses have been revamped into bars, pubs and restaurants, adding to the eclectic mix of nightlife and leisurely opportunities on offer. Located a short bus or train journey from the outstanding natural beauty of the Yorkshire Dales, it is not just the city centre that makes Leeds such an inspiring and impressive place to live. 

Sound good? Visit us over at Avenue HQ East Parade for the perfect new home for your business.

Harrie Kelly

Harrie Kelly

Community Associate at Avenue HQ East Parade.

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