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Manchester climbs up European business rankings

City beats Birmingham and Leeds but London still best on continent

Published on October 5th 2010.

Manchester climbs up European business rankings

Manchester has improved its ranking in the European Cities Monitor, an annual survey carried out among businesses by Cushman & Wakefield.

Manchester performed best on the availability of office space, ranking 2nd and beating Birmingham and London (joint 4th) and Leeds (7th).

The city finished in 12th position, compared to 16th in 2009. That saw it placed above Birmingham (18th) and Dublin (20th), although London claimed top spot overall. Paris, Frankfurt, Brussels and Barcelona completes the top five.

Manchester performed best on the availability of office space, ranking 2nd and beating Birmingham and London (joint 4th) and Leeds (7th).

In terms of value for money for office accommodation, Manchester was 9th, beaten by Leeds (1st), Glasgow (4th) and Birmingham (5th) in the UK.

It came 8th for the quality of transport Links and 9th got the quality of its telecommunications infrastructure. Manchester also has the 8th best ‘climate to do business,’ according to the report. Dublin took the top spot in that category.

In total, 500 companies were surveyed from nine European countries. The interviewees were board directors or senior managers, with responsibility for location. The survey found that the top four factors are easy access to markets, customers or clients; availability of quality staff; quality of telecommunications, and transport links.

London was the top rated city in seven of the 12 major rankings.Tony Bray, head of Cushman & Wakefield’s Manchester office, said Manchester had seen ‘significant improvements’ in some of the most important areas, but may need to address a possible shortage of office stock.

“Despite Manchester being perceived to be the second highest in terms of available office space, with no new developments in the pipeline and the existing stock being absorbed this perception could soon change, which may impact on the attractiveness of the city, so we must work hard to attract new investment.”

Tim Newns, deputy chief executive of MIDAS, Manchester’s inward investment agency, said: “Over the last 12 months, we have worked hard to achieve record results for the city. We now need to build on this success; Manchester needs to continue to be ambitious if it is to retain its perception as the UK’s ‘second’ city.”

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