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Outstanding Results for Thames Valley Foreign Direct Investment

10:18 15 August in News

The Thames Valley, a truly unique, truly global destination, has delivered another set of impressive inward investment results during the 2017/18 financial year. High volume and investment value has ensured it retains its status as the number one region, outside of London, for securing foreign direct investment (FDI) into the UK.

In the third annual Thames Valley Inward Investment Results Report, produced by the Chamber in conjunction with the region’s Local Enterprise Partnerships (LEPs), 191 FDI projects (including multi-regional projects) were recorded as entering the Thames Valley in 2017/18* – a staggering increase of 40% compared to the previous year:

  • Berkshire attracted 81 projects, of which 10 were multi-regional – reaching the LEP’s Strategic Economic Plan target (80) for the first time, with the highest level ever recorded.
  • Buckinghamshire saw 12 projects, plus four multi-regional arrive into the sub-region – representing a 50% increase from 2016/17.
  • Oxfordshire gained 93 projects, plus five multi-regional – attaining the sub-region’s highest ever number of recorded FDI projects.

Also highlighted in the report:

  • The largest number of investments came from the United States market (54 projects in total, including 40 from the East-Coast alone).
  • Overall, the Financial, Professional & Business Services sector secured the highest number of investments (75 projects); followed by Information Technology, Electronics & Communication (48); Advanced Engineering & Manufacturing (35), and Life Sciences & Healthcare (25).
  • Outside of Retail, Food & Drink (66 projects), the largest number came from Life Sciences & Healthcare businesses (25), closely followed by Advanced Engineering (21), Electronics & Communication (18), and Software & Computer Services (16).
  • 2,637 positions were created, including 892 in Life Sciences & Healthcare companies, whilst 757 jobs were safeguarded.
  • 42% of projects were of ‘high’ value, outside of Retail and Food & Drink, and 63% of projects were of ‘good’ or ‘high’ value.

Containing the types of projects and number of jobs created, alongside case studies, market sector information and cluster insight, the report demonstrates how the Thames Valley and UK remains open for business.

Paul Britton, CEO at the Thames Valley Chamber of Commerce commented:

“Our results are clear, unequivocal evidence that the Thames Valley continues to drive the economic growth and prosperity of the country. We are the UK’s true turbo-economy; an international community that welcomes new businesses, whilst encouraging our resident companies to grow through trade and investment.”

Bill Gornall-King, President of the Chamber added:

“The Thames Valley is a tried-and-tested destination for FDI and our role, working alongside the LEPs, is to help ensure we remain one of the UK’s, and indeed Europe’s, most successful regions. We encourage Government to continue committing to ongoing investment plans through the delivery of major infrastructure projects, such as the Western Rail Link to Heathrow, and to maintain the momentum behind delivering the third runway at London Heathrow.”

The Chamber works with businesses, LEPs and the Department for International Trade’s Investment Services Team across Berkshire, Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire to provide ongoing inward investment support and services to both established and new foreign-owned companies looking to set up and grow their business in the Thames Valley. Learn more here.

To read the Thames Valley Inward Investment Results Report (2017/18), click here.

*NOTE: the total number of FDI projects (191) includes several multi-region (or LEP) projects. A simple addition of the FDI projects entering the three LEP areas would equal 195. To avoid ‘double counting’, we are excluding those multi-region projects that might appear twice – hence the total of 191.