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UK businesses are becoming "more innovative"

More UK businesses are coming up with new ideas and launching new products, according to a Government study.

The headline results of the 2015 UK Innovation report have been released this month ahead of the publication of the full report in July 2016.


The findings show that the UK has seen its biggest boost in business-led innovation since 2010. Over half (53%) of UK businesses are actively engaging in developing and introducing new products and ways of making them, as well as new services and ways of doing business.


The survey found that 53% of SMEs and 61% of large businesses (with more than 250 employees) are "innovative". It also found that:

  • The proportion of businesses that innovate has increased significantly in manufacturing, distribution and services;
  • 28% of innovators are engaged in exports (compared with 10% of non-innovators);
  • 25% use technological innovation, up from 22% in the 2012 survey;
  • The biggest barriers to innovation reported by businesses are the availability of finance (17%), costs (15%) and economic risks (14%);
  • 40% of innovative businesses say they have co-operation arrangements with partners, including other businesses, clients and suppliers.


The Yorkshire and the Humber region leads the UK for innovative businesses, with almost two-thirds of businesses engaged in innovation in the region. The East Midlands is also well above the UK average at 57%, and the West Midlands has seen one of the largest increases in business-led innovation, up 12 percentage points over two years.


Business Secretary Sajid Javid said: 

"The number of companies innovating and coming up with new, dynamic ideas is on the rise - up eight percentage points between 2012 and 2014, with over half of businesses now developing new products and services, some with the potential to revolutionise their industries."

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