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Northampton top of the table for start-ups

Business support

03 December 2021

An image of Ben Francoise from Saints Coffee

Northampton has again been identified as the top town in the UK for start-ups as we head into Small Business Saturday tomorrow (4 December).

Business insurance firm Superscript has published a league table based on information from the Office for National Statistics.

The company divided the population of towns across the country by the number of start-ups to generate a ‘business per capita’ score and Northampton came out top.

Saints Coffee

Superscript highlighted one particular business as part of its announcement; Saints Coffee in St Giles Street, started by Ben Francoise and Nicola Butler earlier this year.

Saints is a social enterprise which distributes part of its profit back into the community with a focus on three things:

  • Social justice – working with schools, businesses and charities
  • Social mobility – supporting fledgling businesses to improve people’s life chances
  • Mental health – developing schemes to support mental wellbeing
“A lot of the opportunities I was afforded as a student came purely from people trying to help me. I’d be remiss not to try and pay that back.

“Businesses need to have a purpose beyond profit. That was right at the heart of what we were doing. It helps a lot from an entrepreneurial perspective. It makes the business’s purpose very clear.

“We want to be involved with as many schools as possible, have people come through the coffee shop for our Coffee in the Community scheme, and also as part of our employability programme.”
Ben Francoise, Saints Coffee

Ben and Nicola’s efforts to launch Saints Coffee were initially hampered by COVID-19, so they started with an online model and grew a loyal following while they waited to open their café.

“I would definitely recommend others to give starting a business a go. It’s rewarding to be able to set something up and take continued responsibility for that creation while also knowing you’re responsible for customers, for employees, for the environment you're creating.”Ben Francoise

Council support on offer

“We’re always keen to support entrepreneurs like Ben and Nicola who do some amazing work.

“Small Business Saturday is a good way of putting our fantastic independent businesses in the spotlight, I’d urge everyone to support them all year round.”
Cllr Lizzy Bowen, West Northamptonshire Council Cabinet Member for Economic Development, Town Centre Regeneration and Growth

We would urge all business owners to visit our Small Business Saturday page or contact us at [email protected] or on 01327 322230 to find out more.