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The information is accurate as of 31 December 2022.
Data courtesy of Beauhurst.

Analysis Report: Economic and Business Activity in Cherwell


The Cherwell region presents a dynamic and diverse economic landscape. With a total of 77,256 employees and a 10.02% growth in employment, the area shows a healthy economic expansion. Key sectors like professional, scientific, technical activities, and retail trade contribute significantly to the economy. The presence of scaleups, new companies, and SMEs indicates a vibrant entrepreneurial ecosystem. However, challenges such as a low percentage of female founders and directors suggest areas for improvement in gender diversity in business leadership.

Employment and Business Growth

  • Total Employees: Cherwell boasts 77,256 employees, with a notable increase of 606 employee raisers, signaling robust employment growth.
  • Employee Growth Rate: The region experienced a 10.02% growth in employment, reflecting a thriving job market and economic expansion.
  • Sector Dynamics: The dominant sectors are ‘Professional, Scientific, and Technical Activities’ (18.29%), ‘Wholesale and Retail Trade’ (12.21%), and ‘Construction’ (10.65%). This diversity suggests a well-rounded and resilient economic base.
  • Top Sectors with Increasing Companies: Sectors like Pharmaceuticals and Automotive, each with 4 growing companies, and Analytics and Other Manufacturing, each with 3, are rapidly expanding, indicating potential areas for investment and development.

Business Continuity

  • Company Cessations: Cherwell reported 975 company cessations, a figure that needs to be contextualised within the total of 10,970 companies to assess the overall business continuity and market stability.
  • New Companies: In the past two years, 1,333 new companies were established, signifying a vibrant start-up ecosystem.
  • SMEs and Scaleups: With 8,251 SMEs and 67 scaleups, the region demonstrates a solid base of small and medium-sized enterprises and high-growth companies, vital for economic resilience.
  • Exporters and Foreign Parent Companies: The presence of 416 exporters and 247 companies with foreign parentage indicates a degree of internationalisation in the local economy.

Diversity and Innovation

  • Gender Diversity: There’s a gender gap in business leadership, with only 12.82% female founders and 27.02% female directors. This highlights the need for initiatives to enhance female participation in business leadership.
  • Innovation and Patents: The region has a healthy innovation ecosystem, indicated by 552 patent owners and 19 grantees, which fosters a culture of research and development.


Cherwell’s economy is characterised by strong employment growth, a diverse sectoral composition, and a thriving entrepreneurial environment. However, there’s room for improvement in gender diversity in leadership roles and maintaining business continuity. The focus on sectors like Pharmaceuticals and Automotive for future growth and the robust innovation landscape are notable positives.

Company foundations and cessations over time

Active companies over time

The information is accurate as of 31 December 2022.
Data courtesy of Beauhurst.