Top Reasons to do Business in Edinburgh

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Edinburgh is a city that offers a huge amount of support to welcome those who want to set up business there. Offices in Edinburgh are well equipped to meet all of your needs, with a wide range of amenities available, whilst companies like Business Gateway run local workshops to help get you started, offering help with finance, recruitment and business growth to name but a few.

In this article, we take a closer look at exactly what Edinburgh can offer different companies looking to trade in Scotland’s capital city.


Getting from A to B has never really been a problem in Edinburgh, and even less so with the relatively recent regeneration of its transport networks. A 16-stop tram service opened its doors to the public back in the summer of 2014, alongside The Edinburgh promenade – a walk & cycleway stretching 17km from East (Joppa) to West (Cramond). 

As a result, getting into the city centre to do business in Edinburgh has never been easier without taking a car, with tram stops reaching out as far as Murrayfield Rugby Stadium and beyond. Cycling and walking around the city are also far easier, making the city more environmentally friendly as fewer cars are driven and so CO2 emissions are reduced, and helping improve the health and fitness of local inhabitants as they have more opportunities to safely walk and cycle into the city centre.

Getting to Edinburgh from further afield is easy to do so by air, with over 300 flights taking off from Edinburgh Airport each day. Lying to the west of the city, Edinburgh airport can be reached along the M8 and M9 motorways.

Professional population

Edinburgh really is the place to go if you’re looking for a high standard of staff. 43% of its population holds a degree level or professional qualification, the highest percentage of professionals in the UK. 

Edinburgh also benefits from prestigious education establishments including Edinburgh University, ensuring that a well-educated workforce is available for generations to come. Hand in hand with its schools, colleges and universities comes Edinburgh’s booming student population, which also offers a great pool to draw from when looking for interns or apprentices, or even admin staff on a part-time basis.

Financial hot spot

Edinburgh is the second largest financial and administrative centre in the United Kingdom after London. In fact, financial services now account for a third of all commercial office space in the city. 

In 2020, Edinburgh was ranked just the fourth city in Europe in the global financial centres index, behind only London, Luxembourg and Zurich.

As well as being recognised worldwide as a major financial hub, Edinburgh also enjoys success in several other industries. Human health and surgery research is a thriving sector here, led by Edinburgh BioQuarter, The Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh and the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh. This sector is one of many that are also harnessing the power of data analysis, collaborating with The Data Lab.

Other thriving industries include hospitality;  software, digital technology and artificial intelligence; arts, media and journalism; life sciences; and renewable energy and engineering.


Edinburgh holds more than just a few awards to support its status as an economic powerhouse. In 2010/2011 it was awarded the Top Location for Economic Potential award, and in 2012/2013 was named Best Large city for fDi strategy. But let’s not forget that the city undoubtedly holds a place in our hearts, too. In 2013 this beloved city won The Guardian’s Favourite UK City for the staggering 12th year in a row.

Not only does Edinburgh hold awards for its financial and business sectors, but it is also internationally recognised as a centre for the arts. The ever-popular Edinburgh fringe festival is held here every year, hosting comedians, poets and writers from across the world as they showcase their talents to the thousands of people who travel to see them.

The rich history of the city also helps drive the tourism sector, with millions of tourists drawn to the popular Edinburgh Castle each year. The city’s strong connections to a multitude of famous writers also help draw crowds in, as well as entice similar artists to the area, which is known to have inspired so many famous works of literature. J K Rowling wrote much of the Harry Potter series in Edinburgh, the famous Scottish poet, Robert Burns, is from here also, and Ian Rankin’s crime fiction novels are also based in the city.

RELATED: Why your business needs a base in Edinburgh

A thriving metropolis that has a successful finance district, paired with its own firm sense of identity, culture and history, Edinburgh has a lot to promise any potential new company looking to set up within the city limits. Edinburgh’s businesses are innovative, and inspired, and draw on the great depth of knowledge and talent that comes from its people.
To branch your operations out into Edinburgh, or perhaps establish your startup with your very first office space, office rental spaces provide a solution that is extremely convenient, and affordable, and that allows you to experience work-life from one area before investing in your own premises. Take a look at the full range of temporary office spaces available in Edinburgh, and arrange to view them before deciding on the best location to build up your very own Edinburgh business.

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