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

Analysis Report: Economic and Business Activity in West Suffolk


West Suffolk presents a diverse economic landscape with significant activities in wholesale and retail trade, professional services, and technology sectors. The region has shown resilience in business growth, particularly in areas like business banking and financial services. However, the absence of IPOs indicates potential areas for future growth and investment. The gender diversity in founding and directorship roles reveals notable disparities, with a higher representation of male directors and founders.

Employment and Business Growth

  • Total Employees: 196,971. West Suffolk’s employment base is substantial, with 111 companies reporting employee growth. This indicates a robust and expanding job market.
  • Employee Growth Rate: 9.48%. This healthy growth rate signifies a dynamic economy with evolving employment opportunities.
  • Top Sectors for Employment Growth: Business banking and financial services, materials technology, marketing services, legal services, and other media. These sectors are evidently the drivers of employment growth in West Suffolk.

Sector Dynamics

  • Leading Sectors: The dominant sectors are wholesale and retail trade (17.37%), professional, scientific and technical activities (16.59%), and information and communication (11.48%). These sectors form the backbone of West Suffolk’s economy.
  • Rising Sectors: Notable growth is seen in business banking and financial services and materials technology, indicating a shift towards more specialised, high-value industries.

Business Continuity

  • Company Cessations: With 10,657 companies ceasing operations, there is a need to analyse the factors contributing to these closures and develop strategies for business sustainability.
  • New Companies (2 Years): 4,489. This shows a promising entrepreneurial spirit in the region.
  • Scaleups: 76 companies have scaled up, demonstrating the potential for business growth and expansion in the area.

Gender Diversity

  • Founders Gender: 8.42% female, 90.53% male. This disparity highlights a significant gender gap in entrepreneurship.
  • Directors Gender: 27.41% female, 68.10% male. Although better than the founders’ gender ratio, it still indicates a male-dominant leadership landscape.


West Suffolk’s economy is vibrant with a diverse sectoral presence and a growing employment base. The region shows strength in traditional sectors like wholesale and retail trade, while emerging sectors like business banking are gaining momentum. Challenges include enhancing business sustainability and addressing gender disparities in leadership and entrepreneurship.

Company foundations and cessations over time

Active companies over time

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