Number of companies in Cambridgeshire hits record high

January 28, 2022

Latest figures show that the number of businesses in Cambridgeshire reached a record high during 2021 – despite the continuing economic challenges resulting from the pandemic.

The total number of registered companies in Cambridgeshire rose to 56,346, up from 54,497 at the end of 2020, representing an increase of 3.4 per cent.

During the year 7,476 new businesses were registered in the county.

The statistics come from the Inform Direct Review of Company Formations using data from Companies House and the Office for National Statistics.

Peterborough formed the highest number of new businesses (2,326), followed by Cambridge (1,536) and Huntingdonshire (1,321).

John Korchak, Operations Director at Inform Direct, said: “It is excellent news to see that Cambridgeshire has achieved a record high for the number of businesses in the county despite the continuing challenges of the pandemic.

“The retail sector saw the largest number of new companies (1,019) which may be the result of pent-up demand after the lockdowns of 2020 and early 2021. With widespread restrictions on travel and entertainment, people may have looked to spend their income in different ways. This was followed by real estate with 610 new incorporations.

“Reaching a new record number of companies demonstrates an active economy with entrepreneurs motivated to invest in new businesses which meet current and emerging demands for goods or services. The overall picture for the UK as a whole is also an optimistic one with the total number of companies now exceeding five million for the very first time.”

The UK saw 771,617 new businesses formed, compared to 780,760 in 2020. The overall number of UK companies totalled 5,005,147, a 3.5 per cent increase on the total of 4,837,426 at the end of 2020. This continues a 10-year trend which shows the number of businesses in the UK doubling in that period.

Whilst company formations grew, the number of dissolutions across the UK – 606,912 during 2021 – hit a record high. Reasons for this may be that new enterprises set up early in the pandemic may no longer be operating as people have returned to full-time employment or businesses thriving pre-COVID-19 have suffered as behavioural and spending patterns have changed.

To see a more detailed picture of company formations in Cambridgeshire – including a full local breakdown, visit:

To see the report in full visit:

Inform Direct is a company secretarial and formation specialist. Its award-winning company secretarial and formations software currently supports around 250,000 UK companies.

Cambridgeshire Districts New Company Formations in 2021 Total Number of
Companies end 2021
Peterborough 2326 12963
South Cambridgeshire 1222 12090
Huntingdonshire 1321 10784
Cambridge 1536 10763
Fenland 635 4626
East Cambridgeshire 415 4494

Download the Cambridgeshire infographic: