We are testing a new beta website for gov.scot go to new site

Businesses in Scotland 2016


 Businesses in Scotland 2016

 All content within this web-section is available as a single PDF document and all the latest tables are available to download in excel:

  Please note that the ‘Businesses in Scotland’ publication was previously entitled Scottish Corporate Sector Statistics.

Businesses in Scotland 2016 Correction - Table 11

We would like to advise that the Businesses in Scotland 2016 tables were republished on 16 November 2016. Unfortunately, the data originally published in Table 11 of Businesses in Scotland 2016, on 8 November 2016, contained errors. The correct data are now available.

Table 11 – Number of enterprises in Scotland by urban/rural classification, broad sector and employee sizeband and their total Scottish employment and turnover – is the only table in the Businesses in Scotland 2016 that required correction.  It is only the enterprise count for the 'Rest of Scotland' group, within Table 11, that required correction.

The total Scottish employment and turnover figures for the Rest of Scotland group remained correct. Likewise, this error did not affect all figures for “Accessible Rural”, “Remote Rural” and “Scotland” groups.

Please see the "Corrected Table 11 - Impact" Excel file for more detail:

We apologise for any problems or inconvenience caused by our error.

Further Information

What do these statistics cover?

The ‘Businesses in Scotland’ publication provides information on the number of enterprises (businesses) operating in Scotland.  The main purpose of the publication is to provide an estimate of Scotland’s business stock.

Within the publication the Scottish business stock is broken down by various dimensions including industry, business size, local authority area, urban/rural area and country of ownership. The publication includes all enterprises that operate in Scotland regardless of where the business is based.

The focus of the publication is on private sector enterprises, where the private sector is defined as including the following enterprise types:

  • Companies (including Building Societies)
  • Sole Proprietors
  • Partnerships
  • Public Corporations/Nationalised Bodies
  • Non-profit making bodies and mutual associations

Data is also provided on enterprises' employment and turnover. However, please note that there are time lags associated with the employment and turnover variables.

What are the statistics used for?

Statistics from the ‘Businesses in Scotland’ publication are used to provide insight into the characteristics of Scotland’s business stock, and how Scotland’s business stock has changed over time.  The data are used to inform decision making and performance monitoring – both inside and outside government.  More information on uses can be found in the on-line Businesses in Scotland Data Sources, Suitability and Uses Note.

What year do tables relate to?

The latest figures relate to March 2016 and were released on 8 November 2016. 

The latest 2016 publication tables on the Businesses in Scotland website are consistent for the years 2010 to 2016.  All industry sector data are based on the Standard Industrial Classification (SIC) 2007. 

Older tables, available in the Tables Archive, have not been updated to reflect the current methodology and are therefore not consistent with the latest tables for 2010 to 2016.  

However, a high level time series for total (registered and unregistered) enterprises and registered enterprises has been constructed for 2000 to 2016.  This long time series has been produced on a consistent basis as far as possible. 

The following data is available on the ‘Businesses in Scotland’ website:

Constructed Time Series back to 2000:

All enterprises (registered and unregistered) 2000 – 2016
Total registered enterprises 2000 – 2016

Latest detailed tables on a consistent methodological basis:

All enterprises (Tables A to E) 2010 – 2016
Registered enterprises by industry (Tables 1 to 14) 2010 – 2016

Archived Tables (on old methodology and SIC 2003 basis):

All enterprises (Tables A to E) 2000 – 2010
Registered enterprises by industry (Tables 1 to 8) 2000 – 2010

What’s new?

Table 12 is new and provides an urban/rural breakdown of public sector enterprises and public sector employment by industry sector.

Table 13 is new and provides a breakdown of business sites by urban/rural area and local authority area.

Tables 14 is new and provides more detailed information on abroad-owned businesses operating in Scotland - with a breakdown of enterprises, sites, employment and turnover by country of ownership. 

When will the figures be updated?

We aim to publish the Businesses in Scotland 2017 as soon as possible after the release of the Office for National Statistics’ UK Business Activity and the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Business Population Estimates for the UK and Regions publications, which are due out in Autumn 2017.