Startups in SHEFFIELD

The Sheffield startup economy as analysed 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 411 to 580 between December and January.

Once famous for its role in British steel production and coal mining, the South Yorkshire city of Sheffield suffered many years of economic decline following the collapse of these industries. Startups in Sheffield are bucking national trends in some sectors though and it has, been undergoing a strong revival in recent years, with the city undergoing extensive redevelopment and achieving a GVA (gross value added) figure of 60% since 1997.

Where once there was an abundance of jobs in the manufacturing industry, Sheffield now relies heavily on the public sector for employment, with the city’s two universities, the NHS and government agencies being the largest employers in the area. One independent steelworks remains in the city which specialises in producing highly complex steel forgings and casings.

Other areas of employment within the city include call centres, retail and the service industry. International fee-paying students at Sheffield’s two universities are also a major source of income in the area, generating £120 million per year for the local economy. 

Sheffield Startups by Industry Classification

Measuring the top 25 most popular standard industry classifications in Sheffield for recent startups. Change indicators show percentage difference between the two periods displayed for actual numbers recorded.
Other letting and operating of own or leased real estate29 ▲61%18
Retail sale via mail order houses or via Internet24 ▲71%14
Freight transport by road21 ▲50%14
Event catering activities20 ▲122%9
Management consultancy activities other than financial management18 ▲13%16
Other service activities n.e.c.17 ▲42%12
Public houses and bars16 ▲129%7
Development of building projects15 ▲67%9
Hairdressing and other beauty treatment13 ▲30%10
Take-away food shops and mobile food stands13 ▲44%9
Construction of domestic buildings13 13
Other building completion and finishing13 ▲117%6
Other business support service activities n.e.c.12 ▲100%6
Unlicensed restaurants and cafes10 ▲233%3
Buying and selling of own real estate10 ▼-29%14
Information technology consultancy activities10 ▼-29%14
Electrical installation10 ▲233%3
Licensed restaurants10 ▲150%4
Artistic creation9 ▲350%2
Other human health activities9 9
Business and domestic software development9 ▲200%3
Activities of other holding companies n.e.c.9 ▲50%6
Other education n.e.c.8 ▲60%5
Other sports activities8 ▲300%2
Dormant Company8 ▲700%1

Top Sheffield Startup Sectors

These are our groupings of SIC codes to give a higher view of the startup ecosystem.  The change indicators are how far Sheffield 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 Sheffield to National, you’re looking at the proportional difference not absolute)
Top 15 Startup Sectors in Sheffield
Construction14.26% ▲33%
Food & Beverage Service11.44% ▲55%
Real Estate8.17% ▼-25%
Retail7.28% ▼-11%
Other Professional Services4.90% ▼-18%
Transportation4.46% ▲12%
Wholesalers & Agents3.71% ▼-10%
Health & Medical Services3.12% ▲21%
Other Support Activity2.82% ▼-10%
Management Consulting2.67% ▼-33%
Education2.67% ▲19%
Other Services2.53% ▼-20%
Financial Services2.53% ▼-21%
The Arts2.23% ▲43%
Sports1.93% ▲52%
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 605.87%
Under 211.04%


The average number of active directorships held by this sample is 1.4 (nationally for the same period it’s 1.26)
Sample Size


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