UK business owner calls for more emphasis on business hubs outside of London
As the economy climbs towards recovery, the driving force behind UK Plc – Britain’s SMEs – are finally looking at growth plans for the first time in five years. Beatrice Bartlay, Founder and Managing Director of specialist staffing agency 2B Interface, says that this is an opportunity for entrepreneurs and SMEs to think nationally, but act locally, in a boost for small regional business hubs outside of London.
Bartlay, who last year launched a franchise programme for her successful recruitment business model, believes that entrepreneurs need to better understand their target geographies and focus on areas well-suited for their businesses, rather than immediately looking to London. “Far too many business owners place too much importance on the need to be positioned in central London and this is simply a narrow-minded view,” said Bartlay. She continued: “Not only this, but the emphasis that the UK Government places on London-based businesses is short sighted and damaging to local economies across the country with huge growth potential.
“Local councils should be identifying their unique assists and making these widely known to small business owners, encouraging business ‘hubs’ throughout the UK. The Government should also be looking at schemes to inspire entrepreneurs that are not focused solely within the city,” she said.
Bartlay added: “Although there are many benefits to expanding or starting-up in the capital, many of these may be bettered outside of London. Those looking to expand should have a clear idea of target geographies and where a branch could be successful. Your business may only be relevant to certain demographics and you need to carefully plan out where these are. You also need to know the locations you want to target first: the areas you’ve already received demand and plan out a growth strategy of when you want to expand there.”
Bartlay concluded: “Although the economy has taken a small but significant upward turn, it is far too early for any business to be ‘counting their chickens’ and now is the time to be extremely savvy and innovative with business models and the strategic approach. Those planning expansion should plan vigilantly and be certain that the areas they are expanding in are the right areas.”
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