Main content

Manchester’s SMEs to contribute £12 billion annually to economy by 2020

  • SMEs to generate £12 billion annually by 2020
  • 36% rise has already created 27,000 jobs
  • City ranked first nationally for SME growth between 2010-2015

Manchester’s small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) will help generate a staggering £12 billion annually for the city’s economy by 2020.

That’s according to a new report for npower Business by Capital Economics, which finds that the city ranks first nationally for SME growth in recent years.

Manchester has seen a 36% rise in the number of active SMEs since 2010, the report found, driving a massive 27,000 boost in employment. The sustained SME growth in the city will create an estimated 16,000 further new jobs by 2020.

The creative and digital scenes are driving opportunities businesses to work with global broadcasters and content creators, while the presence of international healthcare companies has also supported growth, the report found. The city’s success is further bolstered by a youthful working population, low business rates and property prices relative to other cities and an enterprise zone that is anchored by the airport.

Capital Economics found that that the top 15 UK cities with the best growth prospects for SMEs will generate an additional £16 billion for the UK economy each year by 2020. SMEs currently provide jobs for a stunning 16.8 million people – over 50 percent of all UK employment.

Philip Scholes, Head of npower Business, said: “Manchester has led the country in SME growth – a fabulous achievement and as this report shows, the opportunity is there for SMEs to grow even further. Manchester has a stunning 60% more information service SMEs than the national average and as a city it is fizzing with creative energy. At npower Business, we are dedicated to working closely with Manchester’s SMEs to help support the huge contribution that they make to the economy.”

Dale Murray, CBE & Board Advisor at the Centre for Entrepreneurs: “Manchester’s energy and verve shows in its clear opportunities for entrepreneurs to start new businesses and to expand existing ones in the city. 

She added: “Affordable business rates, living conditions and workforce skills are all crucial to attracting SMEs. I hope that policy makers continue to do everything that they can to build on the current momentum, so that SMEs continue to thrive in the city.”

npower Business and Dale Murray will be hosting a webinar on Wednesday 14 September at 11am to share detailed results from the report with SMEs and help them take advantage of growth opportunities. To find out more about the webinar please visit here.

About npower Business
npower Business is one of the leading energy suppliers to the UK business market, serving gas and electricity to more than 195,000 small-to-medium sized businesses (SMEs). 

Dedicated to helping UK SMEs, by helping our customers better understand and manage energy, we help them to reduce their energy costs and in turn improve their bottom line.

We’re in touch with more than 1000 SMEs and through them, we hear what business owners want from their energy company and the issues they face when running a business.

npower Business is part of npower Group

Find us on Linkedin or on
Follow the conversation on twitter @npowerbusiness using #energytogrow

About Dale Murray
After an early corporate career, Dale co-founded Omega Logic, a technology "solution provider" that co-launched prepay mobile phone top-ups in the UK in 2001. She sold her company and began investing in startups, winning the British Angel Investor of the Year in 2011.

She now holds a number of board positions in the public and private sector and was honoured with a CBE in June 2013 by HM the Queen, for services to business. She served on the Business Taskforce for David Cameron, the British Prime Minister, in 2013 for a report on EU Red Tape. Debretts named her one of the "500 most influential people in Britain" in 2015.