London has a population of over eight million residents, providing a bucket load of potential customers and consumers for business in and around the city. The UK is said to be the easiest area in Europe to set up and run a business, which is why so many savvy business owners have taken to the capital city of England. Here are seven things that you must know about starting a business in London:
1. Business Address Matters
First impressions count. When potential customers see that you have a business in London, it will immediately give the impression that your company is successful and productive. Central London in particular is said to increase the reputation of a business by a large percentage. However, because the city is so busy and crammed, it may be difficult to find a space big enough to house all of your office and stock supplies. Finding self-storage in London will provide your business with the additional space it requires to reap the benefits of having such a great location.
2. Risk of Failure
Unfortunately, success is not guaranteed. The risk of failure is high with any new starting business, no matter the location. You need to be aware of this and able to come to terms with the fact that failure is one of the most serious risks of starting a new business.
3. Type of Business
The type of business you plan to run in London may have an impact on which location will be best suited for your needs. According to www.entmagazine.com, financial service businesses will reap more benefits if they are situated in or near London’s Square Mile, which is the ‘financial heart of the city’. A business involved with media will do better near Soho, which is filled with creative companies in advertising, publishing, design and film etc.
4. Support and Advice
If you do start a business in London, it is worth being aware of the different advice and support groups in the city that offer help to local businesses. For example, the London Mayor’s Office offers business boot camps whilst other government-run organizations such as Business Link provide support and advice on matters such as law and taxes etc.
5. Cost of Establishment
It costs £20 to register to establish a company in the UK and takes around two weeks to fully process. Your company’s name must also be registered with Companies House, which can come with a few restrictions. For example, you must have the name and address of the owner if you are using a partnership or operating as a sole trader displayed on your business stationary. The name of your company must be original.
6. Research your Market
Before setting up home in London, you need to research your relevant market to determine if there is a need for your product/service in the area. Discovering ways in which you can reach this target audience should also be one of your main priorities as a starting business owner.
7. Taxes and Financial Aspects
According to London Chamber there are three main kinds of tax relevant to businesses. These are National Insurance (NI), Income Tax and Value Added Tax (VAT). Self-employed business owners must assess their own tax using tax self-assessment documentation established by HM Revenue and Customs.