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

Analysis Report: Economic and Business Activity in Salford


Salford’s economic landscape is characterised by a diverse array of sectors, predominantly led by wholesale/retail trade and real estate activities. The city shows a significant number of new companies in the past two years, indicative of a dynamic business environment. Notable is the low percentage of female founders and directors, highlighting potential areas for improved gender diversity in leadership roles.

Employment and Business Growth

  • Total Employees: Salford’s total employment stands at 180,981. The city has seen a notable rise in employment, with 819 companies reporting increased employee numbers.
  • Employee Growth Percentage: The employee growth percentage is 12.46%, reflecting a robust increase in employment opportunities.
  • Sector Dynamics: The leading sectors in terms of company numbers are wholesale/retail trade (3123 companies), real estate (2854), and professional/scientific activities (2721). These sectors form the backbone of Salford’s economy.
  • Sector Raisers: Sectors showing notable growth include mobile apps, manufacturing/engineering, healthcare products, technology/IP-based businesses, and educational services, although they represent a smaller portion of the overall business landscape.

Business Continuity

  • Company Cessations: The city has experienced a total of 2,501 company cessations, which is significant but should be viewed in the context of the high number of new companies.
  • New Companies: There are 7,512 new companies in the last two years, and 3,949 companies are classified as SMEs, indicating a vibrant startup culture.
  • Exporters and Foreign Parent Companies: Salford has a modest number of exporters (438) and companies with foreign parentage (697), suggesting potential for international business expansion.

Corporate Leadership and Innovation

  • Gender Representation: Female founders and directors are underrepresented, with 13.91% and 24.15% respectively. Male founders and directors dominate at 83.04% and 70.63%.
  • Director Age Groups: The majority of directors fall within the 40-60 age range, with younger (<30 years) and older (>60 years) directors being less common.
  • Innovation Indicators: The city has 295 patent owners and 14 grantees, indicating a healthy level of innovation, albeit concentrated in certain sectors.


Salford demonstrates a robust and growing economic environment, with significant increases in employment and business startups. The diversity of sectors, from traditional trades to emerging technology areas, reflects a balanced economic base. However, there is room for improvement in gender diversity among business leaders and potential for more international business engagement.

Company foundations and cessations over time

Active companies over time

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