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

Analysis Report: Economic and Business Activity in Portsmouth


Portsmouth, a dynamic city with a diverse economic landscape, has shown promising trends in various sectors. With a total employment of 68,931, the city exhibits a vibrant business environment. Key sectors like construction, professional activities, and retail trade are pivotal to its economic fabric. However, the absence of recent IPOs indicates a potential area for growth in the entrepreneurial ecosystem. The gender diversity in leadership positions and a notable percentage of young companies with young directors underscore a progressive business culture.

Employment and Business Growth

  • Total Employees: 68,931. Portsmouth shows a robust employment scenario, with 18 sectors experiencing growth. This indicates a healthy, diverse job market.
  • Employee Growth: The city experienced a 9.52% growth in employment, reflecting positive economic dynamics and a burgeoning job market.

Sector Dynamics

  • Top Sectors: The leading sectors include Construction (2,159 companies), Professional/Scientific Activities (1,588), and Retail Trade (1,407). These sectors form the backbone of Portsmouth’s economy, contributing significantly to its employment and business activities.
  • Top Sectors with Growth: Notable growth sectors include Other Manufacturing and Engineering, Business Banking, and Internet Platforms. This diversity suggests a balanced expansion across various industries.

Business Continuity

  • Company Cessations: Portsmouth recorded 1,518 company cessations, a critical indicator to monitor for understanding business durability and economic stability.

Innovation and Entrepreneurship

  • Number of IPOs: 0. The absence of IPOs could indicate either a need for enhanced support for scaling businesses or a tendency for businesses to remain privately held.
  • Number of Scaleups: 50. This number reflects a thriving environment for business expansion and growth.
  • Patent Owners and Grantees: Portsmouth hosts 4 patent owners, highlighting an environment conducive to innovation, though there’s potential for growth in this area.

Diversity and Inclusion

  • Founders’ Gender: 15.93% female founders, 81.42% male founders. This disparity highlights an area for improvement in gender diversity among entrepreneurs.
  • Directors’ Gender: 26.26% female directors, 70.12% male directors. While more balanced than the founder statistics, there is still room for increased female representation in leadership roles.


Portsmouth’s economic landscape is characterised by a strong employment base, diverse and growing sectors, and a potential for increased innovation and entrepreneurship. While the city demonstrates a solid foundation in traditional industries like construction and retail, it also shows promise in emerging sectors. The challenge lies in enhancing IPO activities and addressing gender disparities in entrepreneurship and leadership roles. Continued focus on these areas can further strengthen Portsmouth’s economic resilience and inclusive growth.

Company foundations and cessations over time

Active companies over time

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