London business booming
Throughout the ages, small to medium sized enterprises have been conceiving clever and cost-effective ways of taking their first baby steps in commerce, without breaking the bank. In the UK, the number of small businesses has increased for the 12th year in succession, reaching a staggering 4.8 million by the start of 2013; over 250,000 more than 2003. One of the main reasons for this increase might be the wave of redundancies triggered by the credit crunch, in conjunction with a lack of jobs.
“The real struggle is the expenditure of operating costs and overheads, offices, rent, rates and even phone lines can cost a fortune,” says 33-year-old London based salon stylist, Edita Lass. However, trends are shifting. Since the start-ups of the dot-com era, archetypally opting for home offices, through to the post dot-com slump where small business start-ups had migrated in droves to cloud hotspots in coffee shops, hogging tables all day for the price of an espresso.
Enter serviced offices, an opportunity for micro and nano businesses to look huge. An office in a colossal business centre with upmarket meeting rooms for a fraction of the cost of owning it. But how? “Serviced offices are great for small business. They don’t have to pay for fit out or set up costs and the offices are cabled, wired and ready to go at a moment’s notice. It’s a real opportunity for small business owners to do what they are good at and start running a business and not buying office furniture for an office with huge overheads,” says Richard Smith, CEO of Search Office Space.
But where will small business take us next? In a country progressively populated by small business growth walled in by multitudes of virtual offices, virtual personal assistants and virtual addressees, nothing is certain other than the fact that we are fortunate to experience a 14% evolution in new business, because small business is the life-force of this nation.