Sunderland breaks business start up record with 332 new firms born

Geoff Gibson, managing director of Q Lase,r with Councillor Harry Trueman .
Geoff Gibson, managing director of Q Lase,r with Councillor Harry Trueman .
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MORE start-up businesses are launching in Sunderland than ever before.

There were a total of 332 new companies formed – more than any other half- year in the history of the area – according to the UK-based Duport report.

The city has an impressive track record of success with start-up businesses.

Last year was also a record-breaking half-year, and follows on from the Royal Mail survey of 2010 in which Sunderland had the highest number of start-up companies in any UK region.

Councillor Paul Watson, leader of Sunderland City Council, said: “The Duport survey once again shows that there’s a strong entrepreneurial spirit in the city and that commerce and industry regard Sunderland as a good place to do business.”

Sunderland also continues to attract business with more than 110 strategic investments creating 12,400 jobs and £2 billion of capital investment in the last seven years – believed to be higher than any comparably sized location in the country.

Recent success stories include fast growing manufacturing company Q Laser. Q Laser, only set up in 2012, has won contracts from companies across the North East, Scotland and down into the Midlands.

Managing director Geoff Gibson said: “I’d like to see the continuation of steady growth, the creation of new jobs, and financial security for all our employees.”

Now between 75 per cent and 80 per cent of Q Laser’s workload comes from external customers.

The business employs six staff and Geoff is considering starting a second shift to cope with demand.

He said: “Neil Clasper, the council’s senior business development officer, has been a pivotal part of our growth. His knowledge, advice and general support were exemplary.

“Houghton has proved to be an ideal logistical location. Situated between the A19 and the A1, it’s perfectly suited for our existing customer base.”