Invest Bristol & Bath’s inward investment successes boost record national figures

Foreign direct investment secured by Invest Bristol & Bath during its first year of operation has significantly boosted national figures showing that the UK attracted the largest number of inward investment projects in 2013/14 since records began in the 1980s.

Inward investment agency, Invest Bristol & Bath, helped to clinch 27 successful foreign direct investment (FDI) projects in the West of England region in 2013/14, creating 648 new jobs.  On top of this, Invest Bristol & Bath helped to safeguard an additional 200 jobs via these projects.

Seven FDI successes came from the United States, four from Germany and three from Spain and Singapore. The rest of the FDI projects came from Japan, India, Turkey, Australia and France.

Since Invest Bristol & Bath’s inception, the number of jobs created via foreign direct investment in the West of England has increased by more than 450 per cent – from 161 jobs in 2011/12 to 648 this year.

In 2011/12, just eight foreign direct investment projects were secured in the West of England.

Matthew Cross, head of inward investment at Invest Bristol & Bath, said: “We are delighted that we have made a substantial impact to the overall national figures for foreign direct investment during our first year of operation, helping the UK to achieve record results.

“Our strategy is focused on attracting new investment that creates jobs in the Bristol and Bath region. We work closely with industry experts to gather important insights so that we can generate rich investment propositions targeted at the most appropriate investors. This approach has been critical in our recent success in attracting so much high quality investment to the region.

“We are very pleased with our achievements to date and are well positioned to make further progress as the economy and our capability improve. It is clear we are now making a meaningful impact on the national foreign direct investment picture.”

Annual investment figures from UK Trade & Investment (UKTI) for 2013 to 2014 show that the UK attracted 14 per cent more projects than last year (2012 to 2013).

This is supported by external independent sources, such as EY, which have confirmed that the UK remains the number one destination in Europe for FDI projects.

The UKTI inward investment report also shows 66,390 new jobs were created, the highest since 2001. In total 1,773 investment projects were set up by foreign businesses in the UK during the 2013 to 2014 financial year.

Inward investment projects to have been secured in the West of England region in 2013/14 included the following: Somo, the world’s largest independent mobile solutions company, which has set up a specialist engineering centre in Bristol; Kainos, the specialist independent software company from Belfast, which has opened an office in Bristol city centre; and Sanoh, the international automotive industry manufacturer originating from Asia, which has opened a new site in Bristol.