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Leeds: The International Business Hub

Posted Wednesday 04 Jan 2017 in Industry News by Ann Nguyen

A few decades ago you wouldn't have thought that a city in the north of Yorkshire would become a gateway to the world, but thanks to worldwide investment and diversity, it has. Leeds heading to 2017 is one of the leading international business hubs in the UK and we're right in the thick of it.

Being a digital marketing agency with experts and interests in more than 50 languages, we're able to connect with companies around the world. Need to sell your brand in Germany? We've got it covered. Keen to test the digital waters in France? Not a problem. Because digital marketing knows no boundaries, neither do we. Through our global team of 55 digital experts, we produce articles of shapes and sizes in a variety of languages. From translated content to original copy in a bevvy of native tongues, we can do it all, but that's just the way it is in Leeds.

Leeds Leading an International Charge

Like so many of our corporate chums, we're able to take on projects from international clients because of our diverse team of experts. Thanks to close links with universities across Leeds, such as the University of Leeds and Leeds Beckett, we're able to pluck the bright sparks fresh from their education and bring them into the exciting world of digital marketing. With students coming from the four corners of the globe to study in Leeds, we've basically got a ready-made talent pool right on our doorstep. Of course, a city like Leeds isn't known as a global business hub just because of us. We're lucky enough to be surrounded by a plethora of players with interests across the UK, Europe and beyond.

For example, Asda Walmart, GHD, Sky Betting & Gaming and Arla Foods (a Danish company) all have their UK headquarters in Leeds. Beyond these international players who've rolled into town over the last few decades, Leeds is ever expanding on the tech scene.

The Sky's the Limit

Alongside our own digital expertise, we're surrounded by some top movers and shakers in the virtual world.  Sky set up its own tech hub  within the city back in 2015 and that's already bringing in more skilled workers and, almost as importantly, more attention to the city. In addition to Sky, we've got global science and tech company Leidos which has a variety of interests in fields as diverse as airport security (in the US), cyber security (in Australia) and healthcare technology (in Canada).

Add to these international players Ten10, which provides automated, functional and mobile software testing both onsite in the UK and remotely to global companies and you can see that you're surrounded by  a host of international companies  when you wander around Leeds. In fact, such is the growing importance of Leeds as a hub for global activity that the government is even starting to promote it on a world stage – the city is now part of the UK Trade and Investment initiative.

Mo Money, Mo Pride

With the help of local financial services and enterprise partnerships, MP James Wharton is spearheading a drive to make Leeds an attractive investment opportunity for global financial firms. In fact, according to Chair of Leeds City Region Enterprise Partnership Roger Marsh OBE, Leeds  has  everything investors could want in a city.

"As a strong UK financial centre, Leeds City Region is a prime location for potential investors across the financial sector to consider, as proven by the wide range of global companies we have attracted here. From global banks to financial technology firms, companies are taking advantage of our cost-effective access to the right skills, infrastructure and business networks," said Marsh.

Here at ICS-digital we're extremely lucky to be based in Leeds. Thanks to the city's evolution over the few decades, launching a company with interests outside the UK is not only possible, but highly likely to succeed. Success breeds success and as more skills, cultures and interests move into the city, forging links becomes infinitely easier. Indeed, as we've grown as a company, we've used our regional position and contacts to offer our services in many more countries.

London has thrived because its concentration of companies has made it a homogenous unit that international investors want to be a part of. The same is now happening to Leeds and, as more companies start to shine on a global stage, the city as a whole will start to gain even more recognition from the biggest businesses from around the world.

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