SCOTLAND is significantly under-represented when it comes to concentration of microbusinesses relative to population.

New research has revealed that there are 147,300 microbusinesses in Scotland, 27.5 for every 1,000 people in the country. Only the north east of England has fewer microbusinesses per thousand people. In addition, with just 6.8 per cent of all UK microbusinesses, Scotland ranks eighth out of 12 UK regions.

The scale of the contribution these businesses make to the UK economy is highlighted in the Direct Line for Business analysis. It reveals there are 2.17 million businesses with fewer than nine employees across the UK.

On a UK level, the total number of microbusinesses means there is one for every 29.7 people living in the UK. Microbusinesses represent 89 per cent of all UK businesses.

London, unsurprisingly, leads the way with more than 400,000 microbusinesses, accounting for 18 per cent of the UK total – or 47 for every 1,000 people. London is followed by the south east, with 337,385 microbusinesses and the east of England, with 216,700.

The analysis from Direct Line for Business also revealed that while 18 per cent of microbusinesses across the UK operate on a turnover of less than £50,000, there are more than 23,500 with a turnover of more than £1 million.

Direct Line for Business said this proved that success was not necessarily tied to size.

The average turnover of the UK’s microbusinesses currently stands at £286,879, compared to the average turnover for SMEs of £703,419.

Nick Breton, head of Direct Line for Business said: “Britain is a nation of entrepreneurs, as highlighted by the fact that there are nearly 34 microbusinesses for every 1,000 people in the UK. These enterprises account for 89 per cent of all companies across the UK, which is a huge contribution to the business economy.”