Business births and deaths

Counts and rates of births and deaths of enterprises

During 2019, there were 7,210 business births in the North East LEP area - the highest total since 2016.  There were also 6,475 business closures, which was the highest total since comparable data started in 2014.  The Office for National Statistics (ONS) express these totals as percentages of the total number of enterprises to allow for comparisons between different areas.  These are described as business birth and death rates. In the North East LEP area:

  • The business birth rate in 2019 was 12.5 per cent of the total number of businesses, a similar rate to England excluding London
  • the 2019 business death rate was 11.3 per cent, which was higher than in England excluding London (10.8 per cent)
  • since 2014, the trend in the North East has been for a slightly decreasing business birth rate and a slightly increasing death rate
  • the trend across England excluding London has been similar
  • in 2019, the North East business birth and death rates were both the fourth lowest among the 8 core city LEP areas
  • within the North East in 2019, the business birth rate was highest in  South Tyneside and lowest in Northumberland
  • the 2019 business death rate was highest in Gateshead and lowest in Northumberland

Although the North East business birth and death rates are fairly similar to national equivalents, there is a different picture if the numbers of business births and deaths are measured taking into account the adult population of an area. In 2019:

  • The North East had the lowest number of business births per 10,000 adults (43.7) among the eight core city LEPs
  • it also had the lowest number of business deaths per 10,000 adults (39.3)
  • both of these rates were less than 70 per cent of the equivalents for England excluding London
  • in 2019, South Tyneside and Gateshead had, respectively, the highest business birth and death rate in the North East
  • Sunderland had the lowest value of both measures.

Whilst relatively low business death rates in the North East would initially appear to be a positive finding, research has shown that the most dynamic and successful regions have both high birth and death rates. There is a strong connection between high birth rates and high death rates for two reasons:

  • Approximately one quarter of start-ups close in first two years
  • Some start-ups displace existing companies, for example, by introducing better products or processes.

Business births and deaths since 2014, North East LEP

Last updated:
12/04/2021
Published by:
North East LEP

Source: Business demography (ONS, last updated 17 November 2020)

Data information: Based on the North East LEP area, core city LEP areas, England excluding London and England


Business birth and death rates since 2014, North East LEP, England

Last updated:
12/04/2021
Published by:
North East LEP

Data information: Based on the North East LEP area, England excluding London


Business birth and death rates, North East LEP, England, core city LEPs

Last updated:
12/04/2021
Published by:
North East LEP

Source: Business demography (ONS, last updated 17 November 2020)

Data information: Based on the North East LEP area, core city LEP areas, England excluding London and England


Business birth and death rates, North East local authority areas

Last updated:
12/04/2021
Published by:
North East LEP

Source: Business demography (ONS, last updated 17 November 2020)

Data information: Based on local authority areas, North East LEP and England excluding London


Business births and deaths per 10,000 adults, North East LEP, England, core city LEPs

Last updated:
12/04/2021
Published by:
North East LEP

Source: Business demography (ONS, last updated 17 November 2020)

Data information: Based on the North East LEP area, core city LEP areas, England excluding London and England


Business births and deaths per 10,000 adults, North East local authority areas

Last updated:
12/04/2021
Published by:
North East LEP

Source: Business demography (ONS, last updated 17 November 2020)

Data information: Based on local authority areas, North East LEP and England excluding London