Businesses in Scotland: 2018

This publication is a source of information on the number of businesses (also known as enterprises) operating in Scotland.

Links to areas within the Scottish Government is the Open Data Platform for official statistics for Scotland.  On the site you can access a range of official statistics about Scotland for information and re-use. You can explore the data by theme, organisation, or geography. You can also search for datasets, places or enter your postcode to find data about your local area. The data can be viewed as tables, maps and charts or downloaded in various formats.

Growth Sector Statistics Database
The Growth Sector statistics database provides economic statistics for the growth sectors (also known as key sectors) as set out in the Scotland's Economic Strategy 2015.

Scottish Annual Business Statistics
Scottish Annual Business Statistics (SABS) provides data mainly on the Production (including Manufacturing), Construction and Service Sectors in Scotland. The Annual Business Survey, from which the statistics are largely derived, covers approximately two thirds of the economy. The main sectors not covered are the financial sector & parts of agriculture and the public sector. These statistics are therefore best suited to the analysis of individual industries rather than the economy as a whole.

Business, Enterprise and Energy - Data Sources and Suitability
For background on Businesses in Scotland (formerly Scottish Corporate Sector Statistics) and Scottish Annual Business Statistics (SABS) as data sources including comparison of their differences.

Links to websites outside the Scottish Government

Please note that when accessing the following links you will leave the Scottish Government website. The Scottish Government and its staff are not responsible for content external to this website.

Business Population Estimates
Produced by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, the Business Population Estimates publication is the main UK equivalent of Businesses in Scotland and provides business information for each Government Office Region in the UK broken down by company size and industry. It includes information about registered and unregistered enterprises.

UK Business: Activity, Size and Location
The publication UK Business: Activity, Size and Location is produced by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) and contains detailed information on all registered businesses in the UK including size, classification and location.

Business Demography
Statistics on Enterprise Births, Deaths and Survival are released annually by the ONS. They are the best official source on business start-ups, closures and survival rates and provide detailed information by local authority, region and industrial sector at a UK level.

The information note UK Business Data Sources provides more detail about the three publications above and, in particular, explains the key differences between them and Scottish Corporate Sector Statistics (now known as Businesses in Scotland).

For more information on the Inter Departmental Business Register (IDBR) please see the link above.

Business Register and Employment Survey (BRES)
Business Register and Employment Survey (BRES) is the the preferred source for employment estimates by industry for regional and sub-regional geographies. Data is released annually in September.

Public Sector Employment (PSE)
Public Sector Employment (PSE) is the preferred source of public sector employment data is the National Statistics Public Sector Employment (PSE) series. This is published quarterly by ONS and the Scottish Government and provides employment estimates at national and regional (government office) level based on public sector returns.

Virtual Microdata Laboratory (VML)
The Virtual Microdata Laboratory (VML) is a facility within the Office for National Statistics (ONS) for providing secure access to sensitive detailed data for statistical research purposes that serve the public good. Access is provided for Approved Researchers working on defined and approved projects. Available data sources include business surveys, social surveys and Census samples. For information, a remote lab is located in Glasgow.

UK Data Service
The UK Data Service is a comprehensive resource funded by the ESRC to support researchers, teachers and policymakers who depend on high-quality social and economic data. It is a single point of access to a wide range of secondary data including large-scale government surveys, international macrodata, business microdata, qualitative studies and census data.

Scottish Business Information Service
Scottish Business Information Service (SCOTBIS) provides a research service for businesses across Scotland. SCOTBIS is based on the vast resources of the National Library of Scotland (NLS). At NLS you can access market research reports, business databases, international directories, and business and trade journals.



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Scottish Government
Business and Innovation Statistics
Office of the Chief Economic Adviser
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G2 8LU

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