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

Analysis Report: Economic and Business Activity in Ipswich


Ipswich’s economic landscape is marked by a robust wholesale, retail, and construction sector, with significant contributions from administrative, real estate, and professional services. The city’s total employee count stands at 45,691, reflecting a vibrant job market. Notably, the presence of diverse sectors like healthcare, manufacturing, and information and communication indicates a well-rounded economic environment. The city’s commitment to innovation and growth is evident in the number of scale-ups and new companies emerging, further strengthening its economic standing.

Employment and Business Growth

  • Total Employees: Ipswich has 45,691 employees. The employee base has grown, with 143 companies reporting an increase in the number of employees, indicating a healthy job market.
  • Employee Growth Percentage: There’s a significant 14.95% growth in employment, suggesting robust economic activity and job creation.
  • Top Sectors by Company Numbers: Wholesale/retail trade and motor vehicle repair (1,310 companies, 13.78%), construction (1,168 companies, 12.28%), and administrative/support services (1,130 companies, 11.88%) are the leading sectors. This diversity suggests a balanced economic structure.
  • Top Growing Sectors: Notable growth in niche sectors like toys/games/sports equipment, business banking, translation services, analytics tools, and healthcare products indicates diversification and innovation in the local economy.

Business Continuity

  • Company Cessations: 9793 companies ceased operations, while 921 companies were declared dead. This figure needs to be contextualised against the total number of companies and new entries to understand its impact fully.
  • New Companies: Ipswich saw 1,865 new companies over two years, contributing to the dynamic business landscape.
  • SMEs and Scaleups: With 6,358 SMEs and 42 scale-ups, Ipswich demonstrates a supportive environment for small and medium-sized enterprises and high-growth companies.

Gender and Leadership

  • Founders’ Gender: 18.37% of founders are female, and 79.59% are male. This gender disparity highlights a potential area for improvement in supporting female entrepreneurship.
  • Directors’ Gender: The gender distribution among directors is 26.17% female and 69.19% male, mirroring the trend in founder gender disparity.
  • Age of Directors: A diverse age range in company leadership, with a notable presence (20.27%) of directors between 30-40 years old, suggests a blend of experience and youthful dynamism in the business leadership.

Innovation and Engagement

  • Patent Owners and Grantees: With 125 patent owners and 3 grantees, there’s evidence of innovation and research activity.
  • Foreign Influence: The presence of 152 companies with foreign parent companies indicates international business ties and influence.


Ipswich’s economic and business activities show a robust and diverse landscape, with strong sectors in wholesale/retail trade, construction, and professional services. The significant growth in employment, along with a healthy number of SMEs and scale-ups, indicates a dynamic and evolving economy. However, there’s room for improvement in gender diversity among business founders and directors. The city’s innovation is evident in its patent ownership and the presence of foreign-owned businesses, suggesting a global outlook.

Company foundations and cessations over time

Active companies over time

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