According to Business Footprints, a new report by property consultants CB Richard Ellis (CBRE), nearly two-thirds of major international companies have an office presence in London.
In a first of its kind, the report mapped the global office footprint of 280 major international companies, across 101 countries and 232 cities. Amongst the companies surveyed, over 63% have an office presence in London. This is further evidence that London remains one of the world’s pre-eminent business centres, which will be welcomed by the UK Government whose ongoing objective is to attract more foreign companies to the UK.
London is ranked the fourth most popular business location in the world. Business Footprints ranks Hong Kong, which is home to 68.2% of companies surveyed, as the world’s number one business location, followed by Singapore (67.5%) and Tokyo (63.9%). The top five is completed by Shanghai (61.4%).
The report compares the global office presence of companies across a range of different sectors. Unsurprisingly London, along with New York, was found to be the most popular business location for banking and finance companies, with each city home to 92% of companies in this sector.
In a separate study entitled, The Value of Europe’s International Financial Centres to the EU Economy, commissioned by TheCityUK and the City of London Corporation on behalf of the International Regulatory Strategy Group (IRSG), focus is primarily on the Europe’s eight major international financial centres – Amsterdam, Dublin, Frankfurt, London, Luxembourg, Madrid, Milan and Paris. The report suggests that clustering of European financial centres, and the networking between them, delivers significant and tangible social and economic benefits throughout the European Union.
Chris Cummings, CEO of TheCityUK, the financial service industry’s trade body, commented that "For every financial services head office job there are other jobs created in the City and Canary Wharf - from retail, hospitality and professional and public services. The same is true across the UK, and that's why we must preserve and develop the UK's role as a global financial services hub."
As a leading centre of global finance, London has many distinct neighbourhood that have developed their own financial specialisms. These key financial districts include:
- Mayfair – Noted for Hedge Fund Management expertise
- Fenchurch St – Insurance broking firms centred around the Lloyd’s Building
- Canary Wharf – Has attracted leading US banking operations
Serviced office space is a cost effective way for companies to achieve representation at the heart of the UK’s financial centre. For example, the Fenchurch Street area is a popular destination for finance and insurance companies so anyone connected to this sector will benefit from this proximity and the great serviced office space available here.
Aside from the financial sector, Peter Damesick, EMEA Chief Economist, CBRE, was careful to note “London’s standing as a top global financial centre is of course well-known, but our study highlights its leading position as a location for international businesses across a range of sectors."
Of the global companies which have an office presence in London, only 25% are from the banking and finance sector, with London also identified as the leading centre, in terms of companies present, for professional services and the media, technology and telecoms sectors. Many of these creative and technical enterprises recognise the benefits they can gain from being located alongside competitors and key suppliers and as a consequence have set up their offices in the following areas:
- Hoxton – Home to Spotify, Last.fm and a growing cluster of internet start-ups that has earned the area, centred on Old Street station, the title of the ‘Silicon Roundabout’.
- Soho/Fitzrovia – A major centre for the Advertising and Film industries.
Overall the CBRE report notes that “A myriad of factors have helped establish the capital as the western world’s premier business centre, but the economic downturn has presented a number of challenges which need to be overcome if London is to retain its global status, particularly as it faces sterner competition from emerging cities in Asia."
The City office market is already rebounding strongly from the economic challenges it has faced over the past few years, so businesses looking for the right opportunity to expand into this area are welcome to contact freeofficefinder.com for advice on their next move.