Glasgow is enjoying an unprecedented period of growth and development. Having completed the major regeneration programmes that dominated the 1990s and early 2000s, the city is now fully engaged in a second wave of transformation that is already placing it as a leading UK city and economic powerhouse.
Scotland’s largest city generated £19.3bn Gross Value Added (GVA) in 2014, the largest of any Scottish city. Impressively, Glasgow had the fastest growing city economy in the UK in 2013-14 and is third for UK regional commercial property investment (outside London).
This next phase in Glasgow’s growth is being spurred on by the £1.13bn Glasgow and Clyde Valley City Deal. The City Deal is an initiative by both the UK and Scottish governments to invest in the long-term sustainability and prosperity of the Glasgow city region. City Deal projects include construction, infrastructure and connectivity projects that will physically transform the fabric of the city and wider metropolitan region over the next 20 years.
Just as crucially, an element of the City Deal has been earmarked to fund innovation, business growth and to support the local labour market. Put simply: Glasgow is consciously creating the perfect environment for your business to succeed.
Key among these business incentives is the creation of a Centre for Business Incubation and Development. A disused building is being transformed into a hub for high growth, high value companies in advanced design and manufacture, creative and digital industries, and enabling technology. It is anticipated that the £5.1m project will open in May with the capacity to support 134 businesses, create 536 new jobs and increase gross business turnover by £53m.
Co-located with the Centre for Business Incubation and Development, Glasgow will establish a Challenge Lab where companies from key sectors will receive intensive business support from the public sector and, in turn, offer their time and expertise to tackle societal challenges. It is anticipated that more than 130 innovative businesses will be engaged with the Challenge Lab.
Glasgow has long been a leader of technological innovation, a trend which continues today and is reflected by the entrepreneurial nature of the business base. So much so, that Glasgow has been named European Entrepreneurial Region 2016 based on the regions strategies as the best to promote entrepreneurship and spread innovation among local companies.
You’ll also find the skills, workspace and infrastructure required for your business to grow and succeed in Glasgow.
Top quality people are at the heart of any successful business and Glasgow has one of the most highly-skilled and flexible workforces in Europe. Launched in 2013, the city’s People Make Glasgow brand has immediately been embraced by visitors and Glaswegians alike for the simple fact that it’s undeniably true.
Glasgow’s universities and colleges regularly top rankings, win prestigious awards and train Scotland’s brightest minds. Strong engagement between academia and employers is one key to the success of Glasgow’s business base and guarantees a robust talent pipeline and provision of employability skills. While programmes like the Glasgow Guarantee offer wage subsidies and grants for apprentices and graduates.
From modern, award winning, waterfront offices with huge floor space or the very best converted and refurbished offices, Glasgow can provide a truly sustainable working environment. Three Grade A office developments completed in 2015 and a healthy pipeline ensures Glasgow will be at the forefront of commercial development in the UK. Rental rates are lower than many major UK cities making it one the best value for money locations.
Glasgow’s digital and telecommunications capability exceeds the most demanding technology requirements of today’s progressive companies. Keeping pace with the scale of development, the new Gigabit City fibre network will transform the city’s digital infrastructure, supporting internet connectivity up to 100 times faster than the UK average. In the first phase of development some 15 kilometres of new fibre infrastructure is being laid thus future-proofing the city as the demand for greater bandwidth continues to grow.
There is a critical mass of expertise, passion and innovation in Glasgow today. Coupled with 21st century infrastructure, and significant and sustained investment there is no reason to doubt that Glasgow will continue to be at the forefront UK growth and innovation. Choose Glasgow and you’ll be in excellent company.
For more information visit: investglasgow.com
Elizabeth McNeil, Marketing & Communications Officer, Invest Glasgow, Glasgow City Council
Tel: +44 (0)141 287 8616