City of London Diversity


Around the 80’s, it was an odd sight to see a non-white walking the streets of London, leave alone finding a decent way to make a living. Nonetheless, the idea of immigrant settlement in Britain slowly became accepted and more immigrants settled in the big UK cities. As a result, cities like London are one of the towns celebrated in Europe for their ethnic diversity.


It is this diversity that has seen the spur of great business ideas streaming into the UK. Most of the non-white ethnic communities are heavily invested in self-employment while the rest occupy decent positions in formal employment. According to statistics from experts, about 21% of the Chinese are in self-employment, followed by Pakistanis 17.2%, and other Asian descents occupying 13.9%. About 6.8% of Black Africans are self-employed, while those from the Caribbean occupy only 6.5% given that Caribbean descents highly favour formal employment.


Advantages of this Diversity


Ethnic diversity leads to great business ideas as proven by research findings by McKinsey. Companies that score the top percentile in allowing ethnic diversity are likely to file more returns by a whopping 35%. On the other hand, those that score the lowest percentile do record decent returns but don’t outshine the top percentile companies. Thus, it is evident that diversity within the employment circles does spark a lot of fresh ideas that move companies forward.


Away from employment circles, how many times have you craved Chinese take-outs while spending the weekend with friends? The Chinese are heavily invested in the fast food and restaurant business, and they have brought the best of their Asian menus to London. The Indians not only brought their cuisine, but they also opened a chain of clothing stores in Central London distributing some of their best Indian garment design.


African inspired fashion has caused a stir too in the UK and today we can talk about African Fashion Week London. Such events bring together fashion creatives from African countries like Ghana, Kenya and Nigeria all showcasing new age fashion looks with an African taste. Outside the fashion world, more and more Londoners are getting interested in ethnic fashion looks from all over the world. The retail world has also seen an influx of ethnically owned businesses, congregated in the inner city regions of London. Asians and Chinese are the biggest contributors of retail outlets in London.


The British economy generates about £15 billion in revenue annually and about a quarter million of the ethnic community contributes a large portion of this. By 2005, ethnic business growth had been witnessed in London, and one can only imagine how the statistics have skyrocketed through the years. It is evident that diversity is a big advantage in Central London and the more it is embraced, the more profitable it is to businesses.