Peterborough’s economy

Peterborough has a diverse and robust economy. From innovative SMEs to large global headquarters, our local companies are pushing the bounds of innovation and sustainability, and they're growing.

With five high performing business sectors - advanced engineering & manufacturing, agri-tech, food & drink, digital & creative, energy & environment and financial services - Peterborough fared well during the national and global economic downturn with increased investor confidence underpinned by the city’s ambitions and new initiatives to support economic growth.

2014 saw a record 1,918 new companies started in Peterborough, compared with the 2013 year-end total of 1,503. The Net company growth in 2014 (the balance between business births and deaths) was also at a record high of 825, compared to the 2013 figure of 596.

The confidence in the local economy has been endorsed by a number of new arrivals such as, Bill’s, Argo Lounge, Handmade Burger Company and Cote recently opening their doors.

The fall in unemployment in Peterborough further adds to the positive economic picture, with the city seeing a 38% reduction in claimants in 2015.


Within our population of around 194,000 we have a slightly younger demographic profile in comparison to the UK and Eastern region, with 41% of the population aged 29 and under compared with 37% in the UK and 36% in the East. Peterborough also has a lower proportion of people aged 65+ in comparison to the regional and national averages.

Peterborough has a diverse and multicultural community with our population made up of around 13% non-white British compared to 12% in England and 7% in the region. Local residents benefit from an excellent house-price-to-earnings ratio. Property is attractive, affordable and plentiful and we also have one of the highest ratios of green space per person in the UK.

Peterborough in numbers

  • Population of 194,000 and a retail catchment of 960,000¹
  • Working age population of 122,900 (63% of total)¹
  • An employment rate of 75%¹
  • 5,900 VAT registered businesses¹
  • Gross Value Added: £5,366m¹
  • Productivity of £50,576 (GVA per worker)¹
  • Median salary is £26,551 pa¹
  • Peterborough is an affordable place to live and do business with a house price/earnings ratio of 5.94²
  • Average cost of Grade A office space is currently around £13.50 per sqft³
  • Cost of industrial space is £5-7 per sqft³

Updated November 2016

²Land Registry


Peterborough economic intelligence report - October 2016

Peterborough economic intelligence report - October 2015

Peterborough economic intelligence report - April 2015


For further details on Peterborough's economy, please contact Opportunity Peterborough.