Michael Burton 28 January 2015

Cities enter investment ‘beauty parade’ at Downing Street

Three city region leaders were invited to Downing Street yesterday for a ‘beauty parade’ to present their regeneration projects to 50 UK and international investors.

Hosted by cities minister Greg Clark and Lord Deighton, head of the H2 Growth Task Force, the event was held to showcase investment opportunities outside London.

The invited city regions were Bristol, Leeds and Birmingham represented respectively by mayor George Ferguson, chief executive Tom Riordan and leader Sir Albert Bore. The cities were given 10 minutes each to present their key investment opportunities with five minutes for questions from investors who were selected by UK Trade and Investment.

George Ferguson called it ‘speed dating’ and said it ‘went very well’. His council is showcasing the Engine Shed, Temple Gate and Arena Island. Birmingham is seeking investment for Snow Hill and Southern Gateway while Leeds is promoting its South Bank and East Leeds extension of 5,000 new homes.

The investors included the five largest UK real estate investment trusts, the five largest real estate consultants, six pension funds/insurance companies and over 20 overseas funds.

Greg Clark said: ‘We invited investors from the UK and abroad and clearly there is a big interest in the UK. We intend this to be the first of a series and will be inviting other cities.’

Lord Deighton said: ‘Many investors need educating about the opportunities outside London and have the capital looking for a home. The event coincided with the launch by Legal & General of a £1.5bn investment vehicle to generate £15bn of funding in up to 50 projects across the UK.’

The Government’s Regeneration Investment Organisation is acting as sponsor.

Photo: Stuart Monk / Shutterstock.com

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