Upon HSBC’s announcement that it is to retain its UK headquarters, Peter Gallagher, director, national offices at the North West offices of real estate advisors Colliers International in Manchester and Liverpool, said:
“HSBC has without a doubt boosted London’s status as a global financial centre by confirming that it will be retaining its UK HQ at 8 Canada Square, but the decision also has very positive implications for regional UK centres.
“The top 15 investment banks currently employ north of 70,000 people in central London and in the face of rising occupational costs and constrained profits, HSBC, like all major investment banks, has for some time been revisiting staffing levels and the potential for redeploying staff outside of the city.
“Whilst redeployment has previously been confined to back office functions, many major banks in the regions are now starting to service clients with the front-office functions which were previously only handled in London.
“Deutsche Bank was one of the first to acknowledge potential cost savings of regional centres in 2014 by relocating 2,000 jobs to Birmingham at Five Brindleyplace. Only last year, HSBC committed to 210,000 sq ft in central Birmingham at 2 Arena Central which will eventually house around 1,000 staff. Credit Suisse has also proposed the relocation of 1,800 staff away from Canary Wharf.
“The regional refocus by major banks is proving transformative in so far as redefining the regional capitals of Birmingham, Manchester and Leeds as viable centres for the financial and professional services sector and in turn is positively benefitting the local employment, retail and housing markets. This positive knock on effect is likely to continue well into 2016 and 2017.”