Supporting the Midlands' Startup Surge

Supporting the Midlands' Startup Surge

It might seem odd to start a business during a pandemic.

But that’s exactly what tens of thousands of people are doing. More than 101,000 new UK businesses were created between October and December 2020, 24% more than the same period in 2019 (ONS).

In the Midlands, the Coventry & Warwickshire Chamber of Commerce noted that the Covid-19 crisis led to a jump in the number of people starting a business in the region. The Chamber's startup team have helped more than 300 new startups since April 2020, and is “expecting another influx as 2021 begins”.

This unwavering positivity shows that even in a crisis, there are opportunities available.

At UBC, we are seeing regular enquiries from new businesses too. These enquiries are commonly from small business owners and new entrepreneurs who need flexible office space because they don’t have a suitable or quiet enough space to work at home.

At our Henley-in-Arden offices in particular, we've received a significant number of enquiries from local small businesses to the point where we needed to take additional action to meet their needs.

We're now in the process of transforming one of our larger offices into a collection of smaller, private offices to accommodate 1 or 2 people. These spaces suit people who are transitioning to self-employment, or to newly formed businesses looking for a flexible, cost-effective starter office.

Our reconstructed offices at Forward House in Henley-in-Arden have been designed by local Warwick-based entrepreneur Emma Brayne. We’re delighted with Emma’s plans and feel these spaces are ideal for those who need the reassurance of other likeminded entrepreneurs nearby, while still having their own private workspace. All these offices are based on the ground floor, which minimises movement in corridors and stairwells to enable a safer workplace.

As we learned in C&W Chamber’s Q4 economic survey, there are continued challenges ahead yet we are fortunate to have a resilient local economy. Here at UBC we are excited to be a part of this positive future by supporting the current needs, and future growth plans, of local business owners.

If you are considering launching a new business in 2021 and want help with workspace or growth support, contact the UBC team at