The UK is witnessing great success within the start-up world, as London remains the most influential city in Europe for start-up foreign direct investment (FDI), and cities outside of the capital had their most successful year since 1998.
London gained 381 foreign investments last year, which is a slight improvement on 2013 with 380.
The report included 406 global executives and they were all asked to name the best cities for foreign investment. London came out on top with over half the vote (52 per cent), with Paris far behind in second place (29 per cent). Berlin placed in third position (28 per cent).
In terms of future innovation however, London is not seen as a popular destination. When asked to name three cities that are most likely to produce the next tech giant, London ranked in fifth.
Caroline Artis, EY’s London Senior Partner, commented: “In the eyes of international investors, London is a truly world-class magnet for FDI. 44% of respondents quoted the city’s ‘international business culture’ as a stand out feature, compared to their European counterparts.
This research juxtaposes a recent study created by AXA UK, which found that SME owners are tired of small businesses being concentrated around London. A vast majority of small business owners (89 per cent) agreed that the creation of an SME hub outside of London would be beneficial to the UK economy.
“Fostering innovation, the capital has a rising reputation as a location for R&D investments and appears to reflect the electrifying impact of the fast-growing East London Tech city, commonly known as ‘Silicon Roundabout’.
Cities outside of London have also seen a number of foreign investments. Last year Yorkshire witnessed a 140 per cent increase in projects. South East England (49 per cent) and the West Midlands (38 per cent) also experienced growth.