Startups in LEEDS

Startups in Leeds followed by The Mailing Company across all sectors and tracked against national statistics for new businesses.

STARTUPS Born Last Month


Total new company registrations climbed from 945 to 1,125 between December and January.

One of the fastest-growing cities in the UK, the northern city of Leeds has a £64.6 billion economy and the highest ratio of private to public sector jobs of any UK city. There are over 32,000 VAT registered businesses and over 6000 small and medium sizes businesses in the area. Finance and business services account for 38% of the city’s economy with other key sectors in the region, including creative and digital industries, retail, leisure, construction, tourism, and manufacturing.

According to recent studies, the number of mid-sized and large companies in Leeds is above the national average, with several large companies such as Centrica, Asda Group, BT, Direct Line Group and First Direct being based in the area. The city has a population of 3 million and a workforce of 1.37 million, and the economy of the region is forecast to grow by 21% over the next ten years.

LEEDS Startups by Industry Classification

Tracking the top 25 most popular kinds of business in Leeds for recent startup births. Change indicators show percentage difference between the two periods displayed for actual numbers recorded.
Other letting and operating of own or leased real estate66 ▲10%60
Management consultancy activities other than financial management54 ▲80%30
Other service activities n.e.c.50 ▲25%40
Buying and selling of own real estate45 ▲13%40
Retail sale via mail order houses or via Internet45 ▲55%29
Freight transport by road38 ▲15%33
Take-away food shops and mobile food stands37 ▲28%29
Information technology consultancy activities29 29
Event catering activities26 ▲117%12
Sale of used cars and light motor vehicles22 ▲38%16
Other human health activities22 ▼-24%29
Development of building projects22 ▲83%12
Construction of domestic buildings21 ▲62%13
Hairdressing and other beauty treatment20 ▲5%19
Other business support service activities n.e.c.20 ▼-13%23
Public houses and bars20 ▲18%17
Dormant Company19 19
Activities of other holding companies n.e.c.17 ▲21%14
Residents property management16 16
Unlicensed restaurants and cafes16 ▼-11%18
Management of real estate on a fee or contract basis14 ▼-39%23
Advertising agencies14 ▲180%5
Other retail sale not in stores, stalls or markets13 ▲44%9
Electrical installation13 ▲63%8
Other building completion and finishing13 ▲86%7

Top LEEDS Startup Sectors

It’s easier to group SIC codes to give a broader overview of the startup ecosystem.  The change indicators are how far Leeds statistics differ from national averages for the same period.  These figures represent the percentage of all startups, nationally or locally, that fall into each particular category (NB: so when comparing Leeds to National, you’re looking at the proportional difference not absolute)
Top 15 Startup Sectors in Leeds
Real Estate11.10% ▲2%
Construction10.24% ▼-4%
Retail9.66% ▲19%
Food & Beverage Service8.95% ▲21%
Other Professional Services4.94% ▼-18%
Transportation4.22% ▲5%
Management Consulting3.87% ▼-3%
Other Services3.65% ▲15%
Health & Medical Services3.58% ▲39%
Motor Trade3.29% ▲68%
Financial Services2.51% ▼-22%
Wholesalers & Agents2.29% ▼-45%
Facilities Management2.22% ▲35%
IT Consultancy2.08% ▼0%
Other Support Activity1.86% ▼-41%
Top 15 National Startup Sector Activities
Real Estate10.84%
Food & Beverage Service7.40%
Other Professional Services6.01%
Wholesalers & Agents4.14%
Management Consulting3.97%
Financial Services3.20%
Other Services3.18%
Other Support Activity3.15%
Health & Medical Services2.57%
IT Consultancy2.09%
Motor Trade1.96%
Startups Analysed By Industry

Director Profiles

Honorific Titles

Percentage frequency of different titles used by directors starting companies in the period. We can reasonably assume that the majority of “Mr” are male, and “Miss,Ms or Mrs” are female, thereby giving us a male / female ratio of .

M/F Ratio




These are the approximate age ranges for the directors who are involved with the companies started in the period, along with the average number of directorships held when they started their new business.

Over 605.36%
Under 211.70%


The average number of active directorships held by this sample is 1.29 (nationally for the same period it’s 1.26)
Sample Size


Data prepared by The Mailing Company – providing continuous, targeted automated direct mail.