Manchester: a world-class city for foreign direct investment and property investors

When businesses want to invest, so should you

There has been much made of an impending collapse in foreign direct investment (FDI) into the UK since the EU Referendum. Yet, independent research continues to pour scorn on such forecasts. The latest to do so is IBM, the global IT giant headquartered in the United States. In its latest global business report, Global Location Trends 2018, IBM ranks Manchester and Liverpool in the top 10 of world cities for FDI.

FDI with high-income jobs in Manchester and Liverpool

The IBM research amalgamated metropolitan areas in 50 of the world’s top countries for FDI. They did this to balance locations and not give any single city an unfair advantage based upon size alone. Therefore, Manchester and Liverpool were classed as a single location for the analysis. Boy, did they do well!

Banded together, Manchester and Liverpool attracted FDI into 68 projects in 2017, creating 7,000 high-income jobs in future-proofed technologies. This has provided a significant boost to the local regional economy, and provides evidence of the attractiveness of Manchester for high-tech, scientific, and advanced manufacturing businesses.

Better than Barcelona

In terms of countries most attractive for FDI, the UK is fifth in the list and top in Europe. It sits behind the United States, China, Mexico and India.

Placed firmly in the top 10 cities, Manchester beats Barcelona, Toronto and Dublin among dozens of others.

The attraction of Manchester as a location for FDI is unlikely to wane soon, either. Technology, science, creativity and innovation are sectors in which the local authority and private companies are investing heavily in here. Investment and developments that will give further impetus to this push include:

  • The Graphene Engineering and Innovation Centre
  • The Sir Henry Royce Institute for Advanced Materials (due to open in 2019)
  • Expansion of Manchester Airport
  • The continued growth of MediaCityUK

No surprise for those in the know

The elevation of Manchester into the world’s elite may surprise some people, but not those in the know. Tim Newns, Chief Executive of MIDAS (the agency responsible for attracting FDI into Manchester), said:

This report once again confirms Manchester as a globally significant business destination and, together with Liverpool, illustrates the potential of the Northern Powerhouse.

Greater Manchester is ambitious, visionary and passionate about the future. Billions of pounds are being invested to create inspiring, connected business environments that support innovation and reflect future needs, and ensure that the region continues to be a draw for the world’s most innovative companies and biggest brands.

Talent is one of the key attractors for global businesses and with student retention figures at an all-time high in Manchester, it is creating an even more compelling case for investment.

Manchester is a world-class city with a rapidly growing economy

Manchester’s eminence as a world-class city for business is further evidenced by its rate of economic growth. The CEBR (Centre for Economics and Business Research) recently released data that showed Manchester’s economy has expanded by 7.5% since 2014. That’s faster than London. The Manchester region has grown even faster, at 9.1%. over the period. This growth is predicted to continue, with expectations that Manchester’s economy will be around 15% larger in 2026 than it is today.

With such growth predicted, the city is upgrading its infrastructure. There is a new motorway relief road through Stockport and into East Cheshire. This will ease congestion and make travel to the expanded airport easier and faster. It is also forecast that this will add £2.2 billion into the local economy.

Developments such as NOMA, Circle Square and Mayfield Depot are in high demand, though this demand also suggests a looming problem for Manchester: how will it keep up with demand for new homes from a growing population?

Economic growth is not forecast to fall. The FDI is taking place into economic sectors that are aligning with the new age of technology, with businesses taking advantage of the well-educated workforce that Manchester provides. These are the growth sectors of the future, and are likely to help Manchester outpace most other UK cities – and European cities, too.

Builders are trying to keep pace with the need for new homes in Manchester, but there must be a big question mark over their ability to do so. And that question mark is ultimately good news for property investors – for where demand outstrips supply, rental prices and capital values tend to do very well.

Investors are hot on Manchester property. It’s affordable, offers great rental prospects, and fantastic potential for above-average capital appreciation. Contact one of the Gladfish team today on +44 207 923 6100 to learn about the incredible property investment opportunities we’ve been able to negotiate in this amazing city.

Live with passion,

Brett Alegre-Wood

Brett Alegre-Wood
October 23, 2018

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