Students and start-ups help city’s GVA rating

Sheffield’s contribution to the national economy is growing faster than the UK average and local rival Leeds, but the city is still well down the rankings, placed 57th out of 115 UK regions.

Research by UHY Hacker Young, the accountancy group, shows the city’s Gross Value Added for each member of the population has risen by 2.5 per cent since the recession hit in 2008.

That compares with a national increase of 2.3 per cent and a fall of 4.6 per cent in the case of Leeds

Gross Value Added – or GVA – is a key economic measure, based on the goods and services a geographical area produces.

In Sheffield’s case, the GVA per person had risen by 2012 to £18,415, compared with the UK average of £18,183.

UHY Hacker Young puts Sheffield’s GVA growth down the part played by its universities, the Advanced Manufacturing Research Centres in the city, as well as a state-of-the-art Nuclear Research Centre.

Partner, John Wingfield, added: “Many graduates of Sheffield’s universities are staying put in Sheffield, to put what they’ve learnt to good use in ground-breaking research centres.

“The centres are also utilising local manufacturing expertise to help manufacture innovative technology for international corporations.”

Mr Wingfield says Sheffield has benefitted from excellent growth in the number of start-ups in the area.

“This has encouraged other businesses to the town, helping stimulate further job growth and giving surrounding areas a much needed boost as well,” he says, adding: “It’s vital that Sheffield City Council continues to do all it can to keep the area as appealing as possible for businesses, for example, by keeping business rates down and continuing to invest in infrastructure.”