Bradford heads for London in bid to make capital gains

Martyn Jones
Martyn Jones
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BIG hitters from Bradford’s business community have been to London to promote the district.

Speakers included Martyn Jones, Morrisons group corporate service director, Peter Crook, Provident Financial chief executive, Peter Miller, Westfield chief operating officer, Tony Reeves, Bradford Council’s chief executive, and the new Lord Mayor of the City of London, Bradford-born David Wootton.

A delegation from Bradford Council met with more than 40 business representatives and intermediaries in the capital to explain what makes the likes of Morrisons, Provident Financial, Pace, Yorkshire Building Society, Kelda and Hallmark locate their head offices in the district.

They heard that Bradford has one of the UK’s fastest growing populations and is home to more than 20 PLCs which employ over 11,000 people. Headquarter operations based within the district collectively employ more than 300,000 people across the UK.

The event, which was also attended by Coun David Green, executive member for regeneration and economy, was sponsored by Pinsent Masons and held at the law firm’s London office.

Coun Green said: “This was a great opportunity to sell the benefits of the district to end users and intermediaries and tell them directly why Bradford is a brilliant place to invest. The calibre of speakers we were able to bring to the platform showed the level of belief there is in Bradford and how committed major businesses are to the district.

“The audience was impressed to see that despite the difficult economic times nationally, projects like City Park and the successful Regional Growth Fund application are still progressing in Bradford.

“We have got an excellent set of attributes – like access to a fast-growing and skilled workforce, a strong range of commercial property opportunities and great transport links. The feedback we got from London was very encouraging and we’ll be following up the contacts we have built as we look to promote the district and boost the local economy.”

Mr Jones said: “Morrisons is proud of its Bradford roots and remains a real supporter of the city and wider district. There is a great entrepreneurial spirit here, deep business foundations and a cultural diversity which is a tremendous asset in today’s global economy.

“Talking about the attributes that make Bradford the right location for Morrisons and similar major companies hopefully highlights why it makes a great investment opportunity for other businesses.”