High sales growth accolade for Sheffield

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Sheffield has been named one of the top 10 cities in the UK for sales growth.

According to global business information services company Experian, sales by city firms crew by 31 per cent between 2009 and 2011 – eight per cent faster than they grew in the previous three years.

Sheffield was placed ninth, behind locations such as Hull, Wolverhampton, Birmingham, Stoke-on-Trent and Coventry.

Experian says nine out of the 10 towns and cities with the biggest increases in the number of businesses reporting strong sales growth were either in the Midlands or the North. The only exception was Newport in Wales.

Max Firth, UK managing director of Experian’s Business Information Services division, said: “Many of the towns and cities highlighted as showing the biggest improvements in sales growth were widely believed to be struggling during the period analysed.”

Experian found that manufacturing was leading business growth.

The five most improved sectors all involved manufacturers, with 39 per cent of manufacturers of rubber and plastic goods and machinery and equipment reporting high sales growth.

Metal fabricators came third, with 36 per cent growth, compared with 18 per cent in the preceding period.

Experian says that, historically, a third of businesses may expect to achieve at least 10 per cent growth in sales each year over any given two-year period.

Most businesses would regard 10 per cent turnover growth in a year as a strong, healthy performance in any economic climate, especially if it is sustained over a couple of years, it adds.