Top 20 global cities for startups and entrepreneurs

10 August 2015

Startups are fast arising, and sometimes fast disappearing, business that are able to quickly scale to become multi-million or even billion pound companies. Startups require different resources however to be successful, with cities and regions offering the kinds of skills and resources needed for them to grow. When it comes to providing an optimal startup ecosystem, Silicon Valley still is the undisputed number one.

In a recent report from Compass, titled ‘Global Startup Ecosystem Ranking’, the global software provider for startups and tech companies develops an index of the best places in the world for startups and innovative small businesses. The index is produced by ranking ecosystems along five major components: Performance, Funding, Talent, Market Reach, and Startup Experience. The report is based on a survey of 11,000 startups collected over a period of 5 months, supplemented with information from more than 200 interviews with entrepreneurs from 25 countries. Further insights were gathered from content partners, including Deloitte, Crunchbase, Global Entrepreneurship Week, Orb Intelligence, Dealroom, and many other incubators, accelerators, VCs, policy makers, and academics.

Top 20 startup cities

One of the key findings from the report is that the startup landscape has changed radically in the past 20 years. In 1995 much of the startup activity was limited to Silicon Valley and Boston, while today it has become a worldwide phenomenon, with cities like New York, Tel Aviv and London becoming bastions of technological becoming.

Silicon Valley remains the #1 place in the world to begin a startup, with the best access to talent, funding, startup experience and performance, with market reach the only lagging category. New York has come to take over Tel Aviv’s previous spot, at #2, showing strong performance in every category but talent. Boston now sits in the #4 spot, in comparison to the leaders lacking a large pool of top-class talent – at #12 – and market reach.

While the top four locations are in the US, Tel Aviv comes in at #5 with strong talent and startup experience, as well as significant funding. The first European city shows itself at the number six spot, which is taken by London. London has strong market reach and performance, although UK’s capital lacks funding sources and startup experience. Berlin has jumped six spots to come in at #9, with an underdeveloped market reach holding it back from a higher position. Amsterdam for the first time makes the list, coming in at number 19, with good market reach, performance and startup experience. São Paulo is the only Latin American ecosystem in the top 20.

Total Exit Volume 2013 - 2014

Startup exits
In terms of exists, where startups go public or are taken over through an M&A, Silicon Valley by far leads the pack with an astounding 50% of the value of all startup exits within the top 20 startup ecosystems over the past two years, as much as every other ecosystem combined. While the value of the pie going to Silicon Valley has remained relatively stable, with 55% in 2012 and 41% in 2014, the size of the pie itself has grown considerably.

In terms of the relative growth rate of exit value, Silicon Valley has grown by 45%, however, places like London are growing three times in value, Amsterdam four times, while Berlin has grown twenty times in the same period (due primarily to the two big IPOs of Rocket Internet and Zalando). Over the coming years the authors expect Silicon Valley to stay in the lead, even while other ecosystems grow at a faster pace.

Best cities
Last month featured a similar analysis from
Accenture, Nesta and Catapult. In their view New York, London, Helsinki, Barcelona and Amsterdam are the top five performing cities when it comes to supporting innovation and entrepreneurship.

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10 leading consulting companies to work for in the UK

10 April 2019

The UK is home to 100+ leading consulting firms. New analysis reveals the 10 consulting companies that rank as the best industry employers to work for. 

The list of top consultancy employers is based on the views and opinions of employees who were surveyed by The Sunday Times about their experience of their firm’s leadership, workplace environment, development opportunities, wellbeing, pay, benefits and commitment to social responsibility. In the large consulting firms category, two of the Big Four – EY and Deloitte – and Accenture stand out from the rest. Seven other consultancies made the prestigious cut, all of which are small to mid-sized players in the consulting industry. 


Established: 1989
Category: Large consulting firm
Main office: London
Employees: 15,076 

With roots stretching back to 1989, EY now spans over 27 UK offices. The firm supports clients, ranging from small, privately owned companies and global household names, with assurance, tax, transaction and advisory services. As part of the firm’s core values, EY looks for people who demonstrate integrity and respect; people with energy, enthusiasm and the courage to lead; and people who build relationships based on doing the right thing. 


Established: 1849
Category: Large consulting firm
Main office: London
Employees: 16,138 

Deloitte employs staff across 150 countries and territories, and its UK operations now span 24 offices. The professional services giant offers services including audit, tax, consulting and financial advisory. Among the firm’s core values are: integrity, outstanding value to markets and clients, commitment to each other, and strength from cultural diversity.


Established: 1989
Category: Large consulting firm
Main office: London
Employees: 10,747 

With employees across 120 countries, Accenture provides a range of services in strategy, consulting, digital, technology and operations to clients in more than 40 industries. The Dublin-headquartered company believes in attracting, developing and retaining the best talent for the business, valuing diversity, fostering an open working environment and demonstrating integrity at all times.Ten leading consulting companies to work for in the UK

Karmarama (part of Accenture)

Established: 2000
Category: Mid-sized consulting firm
Main office: London
Employees: 245 

Karmarama is a creative agency, since December 2016 part of Accenture Interactive. The firm’s services include advertising, direct and digital marketing, digital design and build, data and analytics, PR, social and innovation. Karmarama is in the market known for its ability to blend creativity, digital and data, to help brands better engage with consumers. 


Established: 2010
Category: Small consulting firm
Main office: London
Employees: 90

Clarasys is a London-based management consulting firm that advises and supports clients with business change, process implementation, project management and other related consultancy services. The firm serves a variety of clients, from small, not-for-profit organisations to multinational corporations. Clarasys differentiates itself through its truly democratic approach, with an elected member from each team providing feedback for their department. 

The Berkeley Partnership

Established: 1990
Category: Small consulting firm
Main office: London
Employees: 90

The Berkeley Partnership is an independent management consultancy providing specialist support for transformational change, working side-by-side with clients to achieve their goals. Clients include a number of FTSE 100 companies, multinationals and government departments, with over 85% of clients using the services of The Berkeley Partnership more than once. 

Abbott Risk Consulting

Established: 2002
Category: Small consulting firm
Main office: Edinburgh
Employees: 69

From 12 sites across the UK and Australia, Abbott Risk Consulting provides safety and risk environment consultancy services to some of the most high-hazard industries in the global economy. The company helps to work out the risk associated with hazardous events, such as oil platforms explosions, train crashes, or accidents affecting nuclear power stations.

Alpha Financial Markets Consulting

Established: 2003
Category: Small consulting firm
Main office: London
Employees: 180 

Alpha Financial Markets Consulting is a provider of specialist consultancy services to the asset and wealth management industry, working with 85% of the world’s top 20 asset managers. In order to attract and retain the very best people, Alpha, which has offices in London, New York, Boston, Paris, Geneva, The Hague, Luxembourg and Singapore, seeks to provide employees with a great experience.

Lane4 Management Group

Established: 1995
Category: Small consulting firm
Main office: Maidenhead
Employees: 193 

Lane4 Management Group is a leading HR consultancy specialised in human performance. The company’s team, based in Buckinghamshire, builds on a track record of achievement in business, psychology and elite sport. Lane4 was founded by British Olympic gold swimmer Adrian Moorhouse, Graham Jones and Adrian Hutchinson. 

NHS Transformation Unit

Established: 2000
Category: Internal consulting firm
Main office: Manchester
Employees: 52 

The Transformation Unit is an internal consultancy of the NHS, based in Manchester. The firm provides consultancy services to the public sector based around strategic transformation and planning; finance and analytics; project and programme management; and organisational strategy and engagement. Services span the complete transformation cycle, from developing a case for change right through to implementing new services or systems. 


The top employers list of The Sunday Times further includes several other professional services firms that also provide consultancy services, including firms with an accounting heritage (Anderson Anderson and Brown, BHP, PKF Cooper Parry, Price Bailey), firms with an engineering heritage (BWB Consulting, Caunton Engineering) and those with a tax heritage (ForrestBrown).