HSBC report highlights UK supercities and growth sectors
HSBC Business today published its survey “The Future of Business 2011″ (the Survey), produced by The Future Laboratory. The Survey discusses “where the future potential of our companies, entrepreneurs and industry” lies in the UK, focusing on nine next-generation growth sectors and on seven “supercities”. The Survey can be accessed at the HSBC Business website here.
The Survey is based on the opinions of 500 owners and business decisionmakers from small and medium-sized businesses across Britain (with medium-sized defined as a business with fewer than 250 employees). In addition to its identification of growth sectors of the economy, the Survey contains some interesting statistics on entrepreneurs’ approach to business.
Next generation growth sectors
The Survey identifies nine sectors where next-generation industries present growth opportunities:
- Regenerative healthcare
- Space industries
- Renewable energy
- Low-carbon vehicles
- Advanced composites
- Photonics and digital services
- Creative industries.
The Survey calls 7 UK cities “supercities” – “upwardly mobile cities that [are] vigorous centres for growth industries:
- Newcastle: A science city producing world-class scientific research.
- Leeds: A provincial hub of financial companies and ancillary services.
- Liverpool: “A dynamic centre of cultural and branding businesses.”
- Brighton: “The capital of the UK’s rebellious, alternative economy.”
- London: A city state, where the creative sector will take a preeminent position.
- Glasgow: A leading international force in the renewable energy sector.
- Bristol: Pioneering new materials to become a centre of advanced manufacturing.
The entrepreneurial approach: The importance of personal networks
The Survey group “regards strong personal networks (29%) as more important than having a great business idea (16%) or having good business acumen (17%)”. Entrepreneurs lead “increasingly multi- faceted lives. Eight in 10 (80%) of business decision-makers in our survey took time out from their main job to nurture their personal networks. Four in 10 (41%) spent their time working with other companies, volunteering or teaching”.
These entrepreneurs will be tomorrow’s clients. The over-riding theme of the Survey is the importance of the high-tech and creative industries – as might be expected from the Survey population. 62% of the business leaders surveyed believe that Britain will “increasingly stand for innovation and entrepreneurship”. As one Survey respondent is quoted as saying, “we are in the midst of a technological revolution, and that has been promoted by the recession. Smaller companies are often more able to adapt, which makes them better placed to take advantage of change”.
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