High-tech firms can get real economic benefits if they choose to locate in the best areas of London. Research has shown that tech companies used much more office space in the central part of the capital during 2011 than during the previous year. While this change is partly accounted for by a slight weakening in the financial sector, it shows that technology firms were very keen to be near or in what locals call the ‘Silicon Roundabout’.
A great location can help marketing efforts
In a world where high-tech business is often conducted over the net, it might seem odd that using office space in London is frequently so profitable. The fact is though that having the City close by can help in getting business. The Thames Valley is another area that tends to bring a steady stream of business. Marketing material can make a lot out of serviced offices in London which have prestigious addresses. Specific parts of London are perceived very favourably within the business community. The right postcode can make a big difference.
Being in a ‘world city’
High-tech firms can get an international boost if they are located in iconic global cities. Being in London, Tokyo or New York can be seen as a badge of success. These great cities have a dynamism which many other urban areas do not have. They are typically found near the very top of international league tables of city competitiveness.
Access to the brightest and the best
Getting the best possible personnel is a crucial task for a high-tech enterprise. London is great because it has a concentration of skilled and ambitious graduates. The city delivers the kind of lifestyle which makes staff retention easier than it is in many places. London’s multiculturalism is also an asset as it means that people of diverse backgrounds can feel comfortable working here. The many languages spoken by Londoners can also be ideal for business.
A changing national economic geography
For many years, the economy of the UK has been developing at different speeds in different places. Whether you look at productivity figures or house prices, the difference between London and the rest of the country is clear. This economic divide is reinforced by a shift in political power towards the capital which devolution has not yet offset. Being located in London gives high-tech firms a competitive edge over their provincial rivals.
Benefit from networking opportunities
Being in London will mean that a high-tech firm can gain a lot from being near similar companies. Not all networking is done online. High-tech professionals like to meet up and exchange ideas in person. Seminars and conferences are frequently held in the capital. Business professionals from other regions in the UK seldom mind going to a London-based event.
A good relocation option
Not every start-up will take the plunge in the South East. However, when a business has reached a certain size, it may be a good idea to head for London. Being in the capital shows that you are ambitious and moving to London can give an organisation more energy.