London Startup Guide: Where Should You Base Your Startup In 2024? | Soul Spaces

London Startup Guide: Where Should You Base Your Startup In 2024?


Updated: July 3rd, 2024

Published: June 26, 2024

Deciding whether to secure office space for your startup is a significant milestone. While it’s not always necessary, evaluating your business needs and planning for growth can make it a critical step. Here, Soul Spaces Co-Founder and Head of Office Search, Tomal, shares insights on the best locations and options for startups in London and the UK.

Advantages of Having an Office Space for Your Startup

While remote work offers flexibility, having a dedicated office space can bring numerous benefits to your startup. An office fosters collaboration, enhances team cohesion and can boost productivity. It also provides a professional setting for client meetings and can help in building a strong company culture.

When Should Your Startup Take Office Space?

You’ve successfully launched your startup, hired a few employees and now it’s time to consider moving into a full-time office space. As a co-founder of a small team that grew from three to twelve, and having worked with some of the UK’s fastest-growing startups, I’ve learned that the key to a successful workplace journey is understanding your options, as many solutions are tailored to the stage of your business.

For Small Teams (2-6 People):

If you’re a small team not expecting significant growth in the next 12-16 months and want to keep overheads low, consider coworking or flexible office spaces. These options provide access to hot desks, bookable meeting rooms and shared amenities like breakout spaces and kitchen facilities. Sharing space with other businesses can foster networking opportunities and support growth.

For Growing Teams (10+ People):

If your team is experiencing rapid growth, a private workspace in a serviced or managed office solution is ideal. Opt for slightly more space than you currently need to accommodate future expansion. This setup offers the benefits of a private workspace with the flexibility of shorter lease commitments.

Consider Your Ideal Work Culture

It’s crucial to consider the work culture you want to foster. For a modern hybrid working style, you can take up less space than required, but ensure the office technology and AV systems support smooth communication both in-office and remotely. If you need everyone in the office five days a week, provide enough desk space for each individual. To encourage socialising and team bonding, make sure to include sufficient meeting rooms and breakout areas in your list of requirements.

Hotspots For Startups In London

Setting up your base in the right location will set the tone for your team, your partners and your clients. London has been regarded as the finest global hub for fintech and the second-best global hub for digital startups after Silicon Valley. Here are the top 3 current hotspots for startups in London in 2024. 

London City

London City is a vibrant central area that provides access to investors, seasoned talent and potential customers. As a major business hub, it boasts excellent transport links to Greater London and surrounding towns and cities. The corporate atmosphere here is reflected in the types of businesses that thrive in the area. Due to its supportive environment and connectivity, I typically recommend London City to clients in the fintech and digital industries.

City Fringe

At Soul Spaces, we love everything about the City Fringe. This area has everything from its multicultural diversity and variety of Grade A and Grade B spaces to its competitive pricing, excellent amenities and great travel connectivity. Areas like Old Street, Hackney and Shoreditch are already buzzing with creative and media businesses.

We’ve completed numerous design and build projects in the City Fringe and have helped over 40 businesses find their new offices here. The quality of the spaces at their price points makes it an irresistible choice, especially for startups.


Soho is perfect for startups in the creative industries, including media, fashion and advertising. Despite higher rental prices, its cultural diversity, high footfall and proximity to industry giants make it appealing. Soho’s vibrant streets, eclectic retailers and entertainment venues create an energetic environment ideal for hospitality startups and those in the arts.

Navigating London’s Office Rental Market

The London office rental market can be complex and competitive especially for those who have no experience. Understanding current market trends, average rental prices and available incentives can help you make an informed decision. Seek advice from office brokers who specialise in the London market to ensure you get the best deal.

Successful Startup Office Moves with Soul

Working with small and ambitious startups is one of my favorite parts of the job. The first office search and move is an incredibly exciting milestone for a business, showcasing a tangible indication of growth and success. We’re thrilled to watch our clients thrive in the office spaces we’ve found or built for them. We maintain strong relationships, ensuring their workspaces remain high-performing and perfectly suited to their needs. I’m a firm believer that our next big clients are the ones we already have. Check out some of our case studies to see how we’ve helped startups and small businesses succeed.

What About the Rest of the UK?

While London remains a leading hub for startups, the rest of the UK is rapidly catching up, with high-growth companies thriving in major cities across the nation. Many businesses are recognising the talent pools and potential cost savings of operating outside of London. Here are the top three cities, following London, that are emerging as hotspots for startups:


Edinburgh is quickly becoming a hub for artificial intelligence, fintech and digital security startups. The Scottish capital has seen remarkable growth in recent years, fueled by a supportive ecosystem that includes world-class universities, a highly skilled workforce and a collaborative tech community. Edinburgh offers a rich blend of historic charm and modern innovation, making it an attractive destination for forward-thinking entrepreneurs.

At 30% below the UK average, the monthly cost for a full-time office in Edinburgh is £266 per desk.


Manchester is a vibrant city with a strong industrial heritage that is now transforming into a tech and innovation hub. Known for its diverse economy and dynamic cultural scene, Manchester is particularly appealing for startups in media, digital technology and creative industries. The city’s well-connected transport links and affordable office spaces make it a compelling choice for new businesses looking to establish a strong presence in the UK.

To set up your office space in Manchester, expect an average monthly cost of £360 per desk.


Leeds is emerging as a significant player in the UK’s startup landscape, especially in sectors like healthcare, digital technology and financial services. The city boasts a robust infrastructure, an expanding talent pool and a thriving business community. With lower operating costs compared to London, Leeds provides an excellent environment for startups to grow and innovate. The city’s proactive support for new enterprises and its strategic location in the heart of the UK make it an attractive option for budding businesses.

If you choose Leeds for your business, expect to pay an average of £295 per desk per month for office space.

Making the Best Decision for Your Startup

Choosing the right office space is a significant decision that can impact your startup’s success. Evaluate all factors carefully, seek expert advice and consider the long-term implications for your business. With the right approach, you can find a space that not only meets your needs but also supports your growth and development.

Here are some of my top picks for ambitious startups seeking their first HQ. If you don’t find one that meets your needs, get in touch and the team will curate a bespoke list of options!


Tomal heads our Office Search and Negotiation operations. With over 10 years of experience in the workplace industry, including time at one of the biggest brokers in the field, he brings a wealth of knowledge and expertise to our team. Tomal has successfully negotiated deals for high-profile clients such as the BBC, Attensi and UBT, consistently saving clients an average of 29% on their lease terms.

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