Supply chain · 24 October 2016

World business leaders hand vote of confidence to British entrepreneurs

british entrepreneurs
Research shows that 82 per cent of global business leaders would consider investing in British entrepreneurs

A new study by Barclays Bank has revealed that 79 per cent of international business leaders believe the UK’s startup scene to be an “important global growth business hub for entrepreneurs”.

The high street bank surveyed the views of 1,350 corporate leaders around the world, assessing the perceptions of British entrepreneurs and the experiences of dealing with small businesses in the UK.

Results from the survey also showed that 82 per cent of global business leaders would consider investing in British entrepreneurs.

Commenting on the findings of the study, head of high growth and entrepreneurs at Barclays, Richard Heggie, acknowledged that “British entrepreneurs are held in high regard by business leaders globally”.

Corporate figureheads in Brazil, the US and China were positive about the next globally successful company being a product of UK enterprise, at 88 per cent, 85 per cent and 84 per cent respectively.

Confidence in British startups was considerably less strong in countries within the EU, as just 64 per cent of business leaders in Germany believed British entrepreneurs would be responsible for the next Apple or Google.

In a statement, Heggie added that entrepreneurs in the UK should target potential business with countries that looked positively upon British enterprise.

“It is critical that, against the backdrop of Brexit, the UK does everything it can to maintain and, crucially, build on this. That includes capitalising on trade relationships and investment opportunities the research highlights in order to thrive.”

However, despite a generally positive assessment of UK entrepreneurship as a whole, the Silicon Roundabout – the tag given to the high number of tech firms located near Old Street roundabout in London, as a nod to the US’s Silicon Valley technology hub – was a largely unknown entity around the world.

While 87 per cent of survey respondents were aware of California’s Silicon Valley, just 65 per cent had heard of the Silicon Roundabout – almost a third thought it was the name of a television programme.

Find out the best – and worst – countries to start a business in around the world.

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Praseeda Nair is the editorial director of Business Advice, and its sister publication for growing businesses, Real Business. She's an impassioned advocate for women in leadership, and likes to profile business owners, advisors and experts in the field of entrepreneurship and management.