Cheshire East has a well established Creative and Digital sector with a mix of established multi-nationals and innovative SMEs: McCann, employing over 800 staff, is the largest advertising agency outside of London; the designers of Angry Birds are based in Macclesfield; and ThinkPositive has just established their European Design Centre in Macclesfield. The area is home to an entrepreneurial yet creative culture that has led to the creation of a diverse and innovative digital and creative sector.
Having undertaken a detailed review of the Creative and Digital sector in the Borough, over 1,932 businesses have been identified, providing employment to 4942 people. Particular concentrations of activity in the sector are centred in Macclesfield (25% of companies), followed by 15% in Wilmslow, 12% in Crewe, and 10% in Knutsford. A review of sub-sectors identified particular strengths in IT and software (c.42% of activity), Advertising (10%) and Design (5.4%). Whilst the Borough is home to major global companies, 81% of the total businesses are SMEs employing fewer than 10 people, with 66% employing fewer than 4.
Following the completion of the sectoral review, the Council is working alongside an industry-led Taskforce to make a number of interventions to support the sector, including work to improve access to funding, improve alignment between skills demand and supply, and work to encourage strong cross-sectoral collaborations and networking.
If you would like to learn more about what the Skills and Growth company is doing to support the creative and digital sector in Cheshire East please contact us.
For more information on our ‘Digital Growth Fund’.