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50 Best Small Business Opportunities in London

London is without a doubt one of the leading global business hubs. Of the $3.98 trillion daily global turnovers, as measured in 2009, trading in London accounted for around $1.85 trillion, or 46.7 percent of the total. In 2009, the city of London accounted for 2.4 percent of UK GDP.

The pound sterling, the currency of the United Kingdom, is globally the fourth most traded currency and the third most held reserve currency. This is indeed a good reason for an investor to invest in the city. London is a great place for startups and also to run a business because you will have access to a diverse and talented workforce of more than 4 million people, speaking hundreds of languages in a range of specialties.

That includes 46,000 tech companies supporting 240,000 jobs in an ecosystem worth an estimated $44 billion, 800,000 creatives, and some of the world’s best professional service partners. If you are looking towards starting a business in London and you have not made up your mind on the choice of business to start, here are the 50 best business opportunities that you can choose from.

50 Best Business Opportunities That Exist in London

  1. A Lip Gloss Company

A lip gloss company is a business that is involved in the production, distribution, and sale of different types of lip gloss. Lip gloss can either come as colorless or slightly colored cosmetics that are applied on the lips to prevent dryness and to keep them shining.

A lip gloss production business also engages in the preparing, blending, compounding, and packaging of both cosmetic and therapeutic lip products such as lipstick, lip stains, lip liner, and lip balm.

  1. Open a Call Center

A call center is a centralized office facility that is used for receiving or transmitting a large volume of requests by telephone; it could be an inbound call center, outbound call center, or both. An inbound call center handles incoming calls from clients while an outbound call center is all about making calls to clients to market the products or services or passing information to people via telephone.

  1. Start a Law Firm

A law firm is a business entity that is formed by one or more lawyers to practice law. The main service rendered by a law firm is to advise clients (individuals, government, or organizations) about their legal rights and responsibilities.

So also, law firms represent clients in civil or criminal cases, business transactions, and other matters in which legal advice and other assistance are sought. Please note that law firms most often than not operate a partnership business structure; as joint owners and business directors of the legal operation; associates, who are employees of the firm with the prospect of becoming partners, etc.

  1. Import and Export Business

An import-export business is a business that engages in the importation of goods from other countries and the exportation of goods from your home country to other countries. Please note that the main difference between import and export is that import refers to bringing in goods while export refers to selling goods and services.

  1. Open a Coffee Shop

A coffee shop, coffee café, or coffee bar, is a small, informal restaurant where coffee and light refreshments such as sandwiches, muffins, fruit, or pastries are served to customers. It is also a place where coffee lovers meet to network and socialize. Please note that coffee shops are part of the specialty eatery industry, which also includes outlets specializing in products such as bagels, donuts, frozen yogurt, and ice cream.

  1. Open a Boutique Hotel

If you have the financial capacity to invest in a unique but thriving business in London, then we will advise that you open a boutique hotel. A boutique hotel is a smaller, upscale, luxury hotel with less than 100 rooms that offer an intimate experience, and personalized service. Generally, boutique hotels tend to be located in trendy neighborhoods in large cities, have luxury amenities, and have unique, modern designs.

  1. Open a Fish and Chip Shop

A fish and chip shop in the UK is usually a small limited-service shop that prepares and sells fish and chips, coffee, and other breakfast items. A fish and chip shop in the UK can be as small as a single location or as big as a national chain.

A fish and chip shop is a restaurant that specializes in selling fish and chips. Usually, fish and chip shops provide takeaway service, although some have seating facilities. Fish and chips is a popular hot dish consisting of fried fish in crispy batter, served with chips (French fries or wedges).

  1. Open a Travel Agency

A travel agency as the name implies is a company that provides travel and tourism-related services to individuals, families, groups, and corporate organizations on behalf of accommodation or travel suppliers.

A travel agency can also provide outdoor recreation activities, airline booking, car rentals, cruise trips, hotels, travel insurance, packaged tours, insurance, guide books, VIP airport lounge access, arranging logistics for luggage and medical items delivery, etc.

  1. Pet Sitting Business

You will quite agree with me that a pet sitting business is a great business opportunity that an aspiring entrepreneur can start in London. A pet sitting business takes care of other people’s pets either in their home or on business premises strictly dedicated to accommodate different types of pets.

The Pet Sitter’s responsibilities include preparing special meals for pets, reporting behavioral issues to pet owners, as well as playing with pets. You should also be able to vacuum pet hair and dander off carpets and furniture.

  1. Vacation Rental Company

A vacation rental company is a business that is designed to allow travelers to rent private properties for a short period. These rental properties are often located in vacation destinations and feature more benefits and greater flexibility than staying in a hotel.

Please note that some vacation rentals, particularly condominiums or apartments, offer many of the same services hotels offer to their guests, e.g., front desk check-in, 24-hour maintenance, in-house housekeeping, and concierge service.

  1. Grocery Delivery Business

Starting a grocery delivery business is yet another small-scale business that can be started in London. A grocery delivery company is involved in the delivery of groceries to any destination within their coverage area. The process of ordering groceries from a grocery store or farm market is through their telephones, website, or customized mobile app.

  1. Open a Glamping Facility

Another unique but thriving business that an entrepreneur should consider starting in London is opening a glamping facility. A glamping facility is a business that provides facilities for campers who need glamorous accommodation, unlike traditional camping.

Glamping offers accommodation and facilities that are more luxurious compared to ‘bare-bones’ camping, to give travelers the best of both worlds. Glamping is outdoor camping with amenities and comforts such as beds, electricity, and access to indoor plumbing.

  1. Start a Cargo Van Delivery Business

A cargo van delivery company is a business that transports and delivers freight for clients. Cargo van delivery businesses accept delivery assignments from clients or a courier agency. They plan their route, load and unload cargo, document each pick-up and delivery, and ensure timely delivery. Cargo vans are larger than the average sedan hence they are suitable for helping people move or make large deliveries.

  1. Open a Botanical Store

A botanical store is bound to thrive in a cosmopolitan city like London hence the reason why this business is making our list of great business opportunities to start in London. A botanical store or herbal shop is a retail outlet that sells medicinal plants and related products like spices, essential oils, flower essences, tinctures, and elixirs.

Botanical stores also offer a variety of spiritual and religious merchandise and services, including candles, incense, potions, powders, icons, statues, and consultations. Other items found in the shops include novena candles, oils, incense, books, and statues of saints.

  1. Open a Coworking Space Facility

A coworking space business which can also be referred to as a shared office space or serviced office leasing (SOL) primarily rent or lease fully furnished office space to businesses on a part-time or as-needed basis. Coworking space companies also provide virtual office and conference room leasing options to their clients.

  1. Open a Cigar Shop

If you are looking to start a business that requires minimal start-up capital, a business that is thriving and profitable in London, then you should consider opening a cigar shop.

A cigar shop or smoke shop is a retail outlet where smokers go to buy their preferred cigar brand and smoke freely without the fear of being embarrassed, arrested, or fined. Not all cigar shops are open to the general public, in some cigar shops, you would be required to sign up as a member before you can have access.

  1. Start a Courier Company

A courier company is a company that provides air, land, sea, or combined express courier delivery services of parcels, documents, and packages for individual and corporate clients.

Please note that courier and delivery companies generally provide services between metropolitan areas or urban centers and form a network that includes local, national, and international pickup and delivery to serve customers’ needs. Please note that if you are considering starting a courier services business, you would need reliable market research to be able to maximize profits from the business.

  1. Open a Daiquiri Shop

If you are looking to start a business that requires minimal startup capital, a business that is thriving and profitable in London, then you should consider opening a daiquiri shop. A Daiquiri shop or restaurant is a business that prepares and serves different flavors of Daiquiri and other drinks. Daiquiri is a family of cocktails whose main ingredients are rum, citrus juice (typically lime juice), and sugar or other sweeteners.

  1. Start a Factoring Company

A factoring company is a company that offers financial transactions and a type of debtor finance in which a business sells its accounts receivable (i.e., invoices) to a third party (called a factor) at a discount. Please note that a factoring company is a profitable business and there are loads of startups and medium-scale businesses in London that rely on factoring companies to help them accelerate their cash flow.

  1. Dunk Tank Rental Business

A dunk tank rental business is a business that makes available dunk tanks for people to rent and make use of. A dunk tank, which is also called a dunking booth or dunking machine, is an attraction mainly found at fairs, fundraisers, and parties. A dank tank consists of a large tank of water over which a volunteer sits on a collapsing seat.

  1. Shipping Company

London is no doubt, an ideal location to start a shipping company. A shipping services company is a company that handles the shipping of cargos (goods), while also offering advanced warehouse management, inbound freight coordination, and order fulfillment.

The international shipping industry is responsible for the carriage of around 90% of world trade. It is interesting to note that not every shipping company has its own ships, but also operates ship charters.

  1. Taxi Cab Business

If you have been to London, you will agree that the taxicab business is a thriving business hence if you are looking forward to starting a business in London, then you should consider starting a taxi cab business. A taxi services company provides comfortable and private transportation via automobiles (usually sedans cars) for passengers.

Taxicab companies may be independently owned small businesses with only one taxicab and driver or have fleets of 100 or more taxicabs. Drivers are rarely employees of the company, and usually, lease the taxicab on a per-shift basis.

  1. Electric Vehicle Charging Station

London is a forward-looking city hence an electric vehicle charging station is bound to thrive in such a city. An electric vehicle charging station, which is also called EV charging station, electric recharging point, charging point, charge point, and EVSE (electric vehicle supply equipment), is an element in an infrastructure that supplies electric energy for the recharging of electric vehicles.

  1. Start an Exotic Car Rental Company

An exotic car rental company is a business that rents or leases exotic or luxury cars to customers. Exotic car rental services typically last a short period usually 30 days or less, while car leasing agreements are for a longer period usually 12 months or more.

  1. Open a Petrol Station

A petrol station is a station where petrol and other similar products such as lubricants, kerosene, diesel and cooking gas et al are sold to customers. Normally, petrol stations offer one of three types of service to their customers: full service, minimum service, or self-service. Please note that if you are considering starting a petrol station in the UK, you would need reliable market research to be able to maximize profits from the business.

  1. Open a Medical Spa

A medical spa is a business that offers medical spa treatments. It is important to point out that like the regular spas, medical spas pay detailed attention to more difficult issues such as widespread discoloration and wrinkles. These treatments include deeper chemical peels, injections (such as Botox), and laser treatments.

  1. Start a Medical Supply Business

If you are interested in starting a business in the health care industry; a business with fewer hurdles to cross, then you should consider starting a medical supply business. A medical supply company purchases medical and surgical equipment, instruments, and supplies, stores these items at distribution centers, and delivers these products to medical practitioners, clinics, and hospitals, et al.

  1. Open an Antique Mall 

Antiques and collectibles malls retail or auction antiques and collectibles, such as coins, jewelry, books, figurines, and memorabilia. The market for antiques and collectibles, such as coins, jewelry, books, figurines, memorabilia et al. has continued to soar from generation to generation because we still have people that appreciate it.

  1. Open a Sports Retail Shop

Sports retail shops mainly retail new sporting goods, such as bicycles, camping equipment, fitness equipment, apparel, footwear, and other sporting goods and accessories. Supplies are sourced from sporting goods manufacturers and wholesalers and then sold to the general public via retail stores.

  1. Tourist Guide

One of the thriving business opportunities in London is to become a tourist guide. All that is required to successfully launch this type of business is to ensure that you can speak at least one or more foreign languages; it could be French, Spanish, Chinese, Portuguese, or German.

You must also know the terrain pretty well. Once you are certain that you can effectively translate or interpret, then you can position yourself in places where you can have access to tourists; it could be in a hotel lobby (you would have to negotiate with the hotel manager) or via referrals from a travels and tours company.

  1. Open an Auto Painting Workshop

An auto painting workshop is a workshop where automobiles are sprayed. The fact that owners of automobiles would want to make their cars look presentable and newer after using the car for a while or when the paint of the car is fading means that there is a huge market for auto painting workshops in London.

  1. Go into House Painting Business

Painting of a building is some of the finishing touches that are carried out after construction jobs have been completed or before a new tenant moves into an apartment, office, or shop. So also, one of the easiest ways of improving the appearance of your home is first to paint your house. This goes to show that there are indeed loads of business opportunities for professional painters.

  1. Open a Bar & Grill Business

The bar and grill business is no doubt a good business opportunity to start in London. Opening a bar and grill restaurant may not be very easy, but it is a straightforward business that can generate steady profits if well positioned and properly managed.

People often think that starting a bar and grill restaurant does not require any professional skills since it is a small-scale business, but this is not so. You will need to learn how to prepare tasty barbeque and have good business and customer services skills if indeed you want to build a profitable business.

  1. Start a Car Leather Repair Business

Most cars usually come with leather interiors and when these leather seats are exposed to sun or heat, they start to rip off, have holes, stains, drastic color loss, peeling, rough and cracked leather, etc. At this point, they need urgent repairs.

  1. Start a Dryer Vent Cleaning Business

As an aspiring entrepreneur who intends to start a business in London, you can comfortably start a dryer vent cleaning business without much stress. The truth is that you don’t necessarily need to own a fully functional dry-cleaning business before you can make money from your dryer vent cleaning business.

You can start a dryer vent cleaning business and your services won’t just be restricted to dry cleaners but also extend to homes and offices where dryers are used. Most people find it difficult to clean the vents of their dryers; hence they require the services of professionals to help do it.

  1. Open a Juice and Smoothie Bar

Juice and smoothie bars make and retail smoothies and fresh-made juices. Juice drink is one commodity that is consumed in all parts of the world and those that are in the business of making juice are known to generate sales year in and year out if the business is well-managed.

The economic downturn hardly affects the consumption of juice drinks because it is a commodity that is affordable and considered a healthy substitute for soft drinks and other processed juices.

  1. Open a Wine Bar

A wine bar is a bar or small restaurant where wine is the main drink available; a characteristic feature of many standard wine bars is a wide selection of assorted wines available by the glass. Some wine bars are profiled on wines of a certain type of origin, such as Italian wine or Champagne. Just ensure that you have assorted red wines, white wines, nonalcoholic beverages, beer, and liquor.

  1. Start a Fruit and Vegetable Retail Store Business

If you are considering starting a fruit and vegetable retail store business in London, the good news is that you can’t get it wrong. It is important to state that starting a vegetable and fruit retail store business comes with its fair share of challenges, but that does not rule out the fact that it is indeed a profitable business venture.

If you locate the business in a good location and you know how to source fresh fruits and vegetables that are generally consumed in your location, then you can be successful with the business.

  1. Open a Gift Shop

Gift shops retail a range of gifts, gift wraps, novelty merchandise, souvenirs, greeting cards, party supplies, and seasonal and holiday decorations.

One good thing about this type of business is that you don’t need to enroll in a conventional school to learn how to start and run this type of business; it is a business that requires basic business skills such as customer service, accounting skills, bargaining skills, people skills cum networking skills and of course overall business management skills.

  1. Open a Flower Shop

If you have eyes for colors and designs, as well as have a penchant for beauty, then you may want to tinker with starting your flower shop in London. The market for both fresh and artificial flowers has continued to soar. This is as long as we still have weddings, funerals, and other special events taking place all around us.

Fact remains that as insignificant as most people think a flower is, it is still a major requirement for weddings (Bouquet for the brides), burial designs (wreaths), love gatherings, and the design and decoration of event centers and even worship centers.

  1. Open a Medical Laboratory

A medical laboratory which is also known as a clinical laboratory is a laboratory where tests are carried out on clinical specimens to obtain information about the health of a patient to aid in the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of disease.

The large amount of information processed in laboratories is managed by a system of software programs, computers, and terminology standards that exchange data about patients, test requests, and test results known as a Laboratory information system or LIS.

  1. Water Restoration Business

A water restoration company is a business that is responsible for cleaning up the aftermath of a water-related catastrophe. A water restoration company also works to restore the property to its normal condition. No doubt, the water restoration business is profitable because there are countless government buildings, schools, and private businesses facilities that are affected by water disasters each year.

  1. Open a Cocktail Bar

A cocktail bar is a bar or small restaurant where a cocktail is the main drink available; a characteristic feature of many standard cocktail bars is a wide selection of assorted cocktail drinks available by the glass. A cocktail is a mixed drink typically made with a distilled beverage (such as gin, brandy, vodka, whiskey, tequila, cachaça, or rum) that is mixed with other ingredients. If beer is one of the ingredients, the drink is called a beer cocktail.

  1. Start Charcuterie Business

Opening a mini restaurant where charcuterie is the main food that is served is yet another highly thriving business that an aspiring entrepreneur can start in London. Charcuterie is a display of prepared meats paired with cheeses and plain vegetables on a traditional board.

In essence, charcuterie is the culinary art of preparing meat products such as bacon, salami, ham, sausage, terrines, galantines, ballotines, pâtés, and confit. Interestingly, charcuterie remains a popular way to feed guests on a budget for small parties or wine tastings, and a person that prepares charcuterie is called a Charcutier.

  1. Open a Teeth Whitening Shop

A teeth whitening clinic is a business that provides elective dental services that improve the appearance of teeth (whitening procedures), gums, or smiles. Some teeth whitening clinics go as far as offering services that include cosmetic crown and bridgework, veneers, inlays and outlays, and direct bonding which is not generally covered by insurance, making them highly discretionary.

  1. Start Beard Oil Production Company

A beard oil production company is a business that is involved in the production of different types of beard oil. Beard oil is a cosmetic product that helps men nourish the skin underneath their beards, as well as the hair follicles themselves.

People use beard oil to keep their beards looking fuller, softer, and tamer. Beard oil is also sometimes used to promote beard growth. There are five oil derivatives commonly used as the base in beard oil and they are coconut, olive, sunflower, jojoba, and argan.

  1. Air Condition Installation and Servicing Business

Air-condition installation and servicing business is yet another highly profitable and thriving business opportunity that an entrepreneur should consider starting in London. This type of business requires technical skills hence if you are looking towards starting this type of business, you should ensure that you have acquired the relevant training and exposure.

There is indeed a large market for this type of service because there is hardly any corporate organization where you won’t find air conditioning installed. All you need to do is to send out business proposals to as many corporate organizations within your reach and you are sure going to get a good response from some of the organizations that received your proposal to service and

  1. Open a Retail Pharmacy Store

If you are a licensed pharmacist and you looking toward starting your own business as against working for someone, then you should consider opening a retail pharmacy store. This type of business is highly profitable and thriving if well located.

The pharmacy retailing store business is one of the few retailing businesses that are highly regulated. Before you can start this type of business, you will be required to secure permits and a license from the regulatory bodies in your county or city.

  1. Start a Funnel Cake Business

A funnel cake business is a business that essentially bakes (fry) and sells funnel cakes. Funnel cake, which is also known as a fried-dough dish is popular at fairs, carnivals, boardwalks, and among street vendors.

To make funnel cake, the batter is swirled around into hot oil using a funnel, creating a lattice of deep-fried dough, and then served with heaps of powdered sugar. Please note that funnel cake tastes a lot like a fried doughnut, and can be finished with all sorts of toppings, from icing sugar to syrup and ice cream.

  1. Start Medical Waste Disposal Business

A medical waste disposal company is a business that disposes of medical waste. Medical waste comprises wastes generated in hospitals, laboratories, dental clinics, optic clinics, and diagnostic centers. This waste can be harmful to humans if not properly disposed of. You can rake in good cash if you start up this business.