May11 leeds city region supplement


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May11 leeds city region supplement

  1. 1. Leeds CityRegionA Force for GrowthIn association with:
  2. 2. Foreword: Contents Leeds City Foreword: Leeds City Region..................P2 Region Foreword: Sarah Day - Managing Partner Leeds Office, DLA Piper......................... P3 The Leeds City Region stands at a pivotal point. Foreword: Neil Williams - Regional Director It is emerging from a Leeds Corporate Banking Centre, recession that threatened the financial Santander............................................... P4 and professional services that had fuelled growth in the region and City Region Interview put swathes of - David Parkin interviews LEP Chairman development on hold, Neil McLean .........................................P5-7 while the abolition of Ian Briggs - Editor regional development agency Yorkshire Growing Optimism on City Region’s Forward and move to local enterprise partnerships has put a new emphasis Economic Future ................................P9-11 on the City Region and, more fundamentally, its business community, to set the area’s own direction. Building for the Future......................P13-15 ‘...critical choices will have to be Round Table - Singing off the made that will dictate how the Leeds Same Hymn Sheet ...........................P16-18 City Region fairs for years to come’ In the next few months, critical choices will have to be made that will dictate how the Leeds City Region fairs for years to come. What sectors can the City Region lead the world in? How can it transform the Round Foundry Media Centre, cutting edge research of its universities into major Foundry Street, businesses? Where should scarce public money be spent to have maximum impact? How can the Leeds Leeds LS11 5QP City Region become a brand that stands out in a crowded global marketplace for inward investment? Managing Director: What role will physical regeneration have in the new David Parkin e: economic landscape? This supplement seeks to kickstart some of those Editor: important conversations. Over the next few pages, Ian Briggs e: leading figures from the region offer their views on the future of the City Region and the steps that are needed Deputy Editor: to ensure that we build on the tremendous advances James Reed e: that have been made in the last decade. Both DLA Piper and Santander Corporate Banking are each playing important roles in the growth of the regional economy, making them ideal partners for Business Development Manager: this supplement. Aimee Willow e: Despite the slow pace of economic recovery, there are genuine signs of optimism emerging for the economic t: 0113 394 4541 future of the Leeds City Region. Exciting times lie ahead. f: 0113 394 4322 Ian Briggs Editor In association with:P2 - Leeds City Region supplement - May 2011
  3. 3. Unified approach attract opportunities The last few years opportunities for the City Region to emerge as a brought challenging national and international contender in other sectors. times for businesses One area is the waste and renewables industry - already, operating in Yorkshires private sector waste companies are Yorkshire. But where delivering cutting edge technology and services. In addition, there are challenges, there is the potential to position the City Region as a lie opportunities. world-class centre for green energy and low-carbon industries, creating thousands of jobs. The Leeds City Region has emerged from the recession in a strong ‘The Leeds City Region has position, ready to emerged from the recession in a Sarah Day Managing Partner, capitalise on growth strong position’ DLA Piper - Leeds Office prospects and build on solid commercial foundations that have been rocked, but not broken. Technology is also a significant growth market which generates new ideas, enterprises and challenges on a The way we operate as a business community is evolving. constant basis. A focus here will ensure that our region This change is being driven largely by a shift on the grasps and exploits the huge opportunities that the sector, public-private sector axis; a deeper integration of the which includes biotech and biomedical, brings with it. private sector into the public realm is creating a stronger Combined with added strengths in advanced manufacturing and more necessary partnership between the two than and the creative industries, the Leeds City Region is one weve seen historically. of the UKs most diverse economies. We can provide a Successful collaboration here is key to achieving more. world-class offering in a wide range of sectors and Done well, both sectors will work in synergy to fulfil their specialisms and it is crucial that we set our sights on individual needs whilst realizing the goals of the wider international markets to promote these services. region. Thanks to its professional capabilities and the Whilst we remain committed to the local and national presence of the Leeds City Region Local Enterprise markets in which we operate, DLA Piper Leeds also sees Partnership (LEP), Leeds is perfectly placed to exploit the opportunities from international markets and so aims to benefits this will bring. get closer to these. We have identified specific foreign Made up of 11 local authorities, the Leeds City Region territories as being key to our growth aspirations and are LEP is the largest outside London. It represents one of the working more closely with our colleagues in Europe, the UKs largest economies - worth £52bn - and is an alliance west coast of the USA, China and Australia. which will encourage future growth and inward investment. Visibility in these markets will reap many benefits. The recently announced co-ordinated approach of the Businesses across the region should be encouraged to three LEPs for York & North Yorkshire, Leeds and Sheffield develop and nurture their links overseas, not only to means that we are now in an even better position to develop fulfil their export and manufacturing objectives, but and compete with other national and international cities in also to encourage inward investment from these the commercial arena. countries in return. This unified approach will undoubtedly attract new This approach will ensure the Leeds City Region achieves opportunities to Yorkshire, helping to shrink the long the recognition it deserves as a thriving and attractive perceived North-South divide and to promote the region place to do business. Actively encouraging innovation and on the international stage. Improved, positive relationships growth and setting its sights on a positioning beyond its will not only encourage business growth, but will work existing local and national capabilities is key - if successful, hand in hand to bring an improved social provision. the region has the potential to become an international A number of sectors and geographies have emerged as centre fit to rival major commercial hubs across the globe. fundamental to our regions prosperity. Leeds is already renowned for the strength of its professional and financial services and encouraging continued growth here should Sarah Day - Managing Partner - Leeds Office, undoubtedly remain a key focus. But there remain significant DLA Piper In association with:P3 - Leeds City Region supplement - May 2011
  4. 4. Proud to be committed to Leeds City Region At Santander conditions. But for Santander Corporate Banking, it is Corporate Banking, not all about price. we are committed As a sustainable lender, we focus on getting to know to supporting your business and understanding your potential. By developing better relationships with our customers SMEs - not just we are able to provide sustainable funding solutions by providing the that focus on the long-term viability of a business finance they need rather than short-term volatility. to expand, but Unlocking other finance also through developing true Our Relationship Directors and product specialists are experts in all the sources of finance available to support partnerships business growth. Neil Williams - working with Regional Director - Yorkshire, them to achieve Santander their goals; understanding their challenges and helping ‘We have a strong track record them grow and be more successful. on lending and have made a firm Our Corporate Banking Centre in the centre of Leeds commitment to provide new is an ideal base for our teams to support businesses in the local area and this central location is replicated in finance for SMEs.’ Hull & Sheffield. Our Relationship Directors are experts in helping businesses grow and will use their local market experience to work with you to find the right This includes the governments Enterprise Finance funding solutions for your business. Guarantee Scheme, offering finance to higher-risk We can help you access direct investment, additional businesses, and specialist support for exporters. We’ll sources of finance, and provide solutions to help you advise you whether you qualify, and help you to apply. invest in equipment or pay suppliers more efficiently. Asset finance is also available to help you invest in Most importantly, we work with our customers as new property, plant and equipment, and invoice business partners and aim to give them the long-term, finance, which lets you unlock cash flow from invoices. hands-on local support they need to develop their There are many ways to manage both - we’ll help find business to its full potential. the right ones for you. New lending: a £4bn pledge Reaching your full potential Firstly, we can help businesses access finance. We There is no doubt that Santander Corporate Banking have a strong track record on lending and have made remains committed to the SME market. We pride a firm commitment to provide new finance for SMEs. ourselves on building long term relationships with In 2010, while overall bank lending fell by 20%, our businesses in the region which can only be done by lending to SMEs rose by 26%. This year, we have taking the time to truly understand how your business committed, as part of the government’s ‘Project Merlin’, works, its aims and objectives. to increase lending to SMEs by another 25% and first If your business could benefit from this personal quarter results show we are ahead of target. approach to corporate banking, we’d be delighted to We’re the only bank that has revealed firm targets for speak to you. lending in 2011 and have pledged £6.7bn in new finance, with £4bn of this directed to SMEs. We want to maintain competitive terms for our funding, Neil Williams - Regional Director - Yorkshire in a responsible manner, without unreasonable Leeds Corporate Banking Centre, Santander In association with:P4 - Leeds City Region supplement - May 2011
  5. 5. Chairman offers LEP vision Focus can help City Region punch above it’s weight Neil McLean is a man on a mission. David Parkin speaks to the Leeds City Region LEP chairman. IT is early days in the life of the Leeds City Region Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) but its chairman Neil McLean says he is greatly enthused by his new role. There is no room for negativity from McLean, a no-nonsense property lawyer by background, who recently stepped down as the long-serving Leeds office head of DLA Piper, one of the world’s largest law firms. LEP chairman Neil McLean ‘People say that the “If you can start by creating a real suggest he will have to use his LEP will sort environment for growth and bring casting vote anytime soon. everything out - well it investment into the region then even on a small scale you are When it is pointed out that 17 won’t. We need to be making a difference. people makes a big board of a facilitator to help directors, he smiles and points “We have to be sensible here. out that he currently chairs a people work together...’ People say that the LEP will sort larger one. “Leeds City College everything out - well it won’t. We was 20 members on the board need to be a facilitator to help and it is now 22.” Not even a seemingly unwieldy people work together and to make board finely balanced with eight it easy to do business. public sector and eight private ‘...there is a real sector representatives can dampen “We can’t do it for people, we his enthusiasm for a role that gives can support and help and direct hunger to get on and but whether it works or not him a crucial position driving the depends on how the private sector make progress...’ economic recovery across the City Region, a huge area stretching views the opportunities for business from Barnsley in the south to rural in the region. “I was very pleased with the first North Yorkshire. “How easy it is to come here to do board meeting. The attitude of McLean has now chaired two board business, to find a skilled everybody, there is a real hunger meetings of Leeds City Region LEP. workforce? Are we a supportive to get on and make progress While he says he is paid a “nominal” business community? And that is and identify our investment and sum as non-executive chairman, what have to convince people of.” growth strategy. he has effectively been doing The board is made up of eight public the job on an executive basis He is acutely aware that the LEP sector members, eight private sector since he took the role. can help provide the focus to members “and me” says McLean, I point out that his enthusiasm is who adds that the accord at the help the City Region punch above clearly visible. first board meeting does not its weight. In association with:P5 - Leeds City Region supplement - May 2011
  6. 6. “The City Region has an economy “We don’t want to make it too worth £52bn and is larger than that complicated but you get some form ‘We want to get people of nine European countries. People of structure.” are surprised at that.” in developing quality Big decisions are needed early on from the LEP, the key one and generating ‘...there are two things being the location of an business rates and we enterprise zone, the Government that need identifying initiative introduced in the Budget can use it to pump first: what local in March. prime development’ authorities can deliver “The enterprise zone is of benefit to the region because the new The Manchester LEP decided last and what the private business rates that are generated month that it was to site its sector can deliver’ can be kept and recirculated within enterprise zone at Manchester the region. Airport. He says there are two things that “We want to get people in “If you look at the Manchester need identifying first: what local developing quality and generating area they have a successful authorities can deliver and what the business rates and we can use it international airport and it is pretty private sector can deliver. to pump prime development. obvious. In Nottingham, with the Boots campus, pharma is a growing “We will have delivery arms through McLean admits that choosing the part of the economy. the public and private sector. location of the EZ as a “difficult job”. “For us it’s a bit difficult, it’s a diverse economy, we don’t have one key business area that gives you that Tackling the scale of the obvious lead. Leeds City Region “Sheffield has steel - but we don’t have one readily identifiable business area. THE breadth and scale of “If you put it in the wrong place the Leeds City Region, and it fails then you are “It makes decision-making more benefiting nobody. difficult,” says McLean, but he has presents both challenges already done plenty of work to and opportunities, “The far reaches of the City Region identify the key sectors that the City according to Neil McLean. will also work with other regions. Region should look to focus on to People should not feel that they provide it with national and On the positive side he says: are on the geographical international investment “Ninety five percent of the working opportunities. outreaches. population live and work in the region. If you can generate growth in the region the wider benefit will ‘Sheffield has steel ‘..everybody can benefit be to the whole region. - but we don’t have within the City Region “It’s very much trying to convince one readily identifiable wherever the pockets people that everybody business area’ of real growth are’ can benefit within the City Region wherever the pockets of real “Everybody is making a lot of noise growth are. “We will work with other LEPs. about the enterprise zone but they I have met the chairs of the are part of a much bigger jigsaw. “You have to accept that LEPs in Yorkshire and I hope to We need to look at other areas investment should go to where where there are maybe ERDF the best return can be because meet the chair of Manchester support and the TIFs.” the best return will service the because there are areas we will whole of the region. work together on.” Tax increment financing (TIF) is a public financing method which is In association with:P6 - Leeds City Region supplement - May 2011
  7. 7. used as a subsidy for “Let’s be realistic, some of the redevelopment and community stuff we are talking about is 10, 15, improvement projects and McLean, 20 years ahead.” What lies highly experienced in property and development projects, He says “two to three years would ahead for believes they should be a key area of focus for the LEP. seem sensible” for his tenure. the LEP NEIL McLean is He describes the recent ‘One of the issues realistic when he announcement of the first successful bids for the Regional we are talking about surveys the challenges Growth Fund as “confused and ahead for the LEP. He is a change of says the City Region confusing”. mindset. We have to has been “going along “There did seem to be a bit of a get people thinking nicely” for years but random selection, both in Yorkshire must up its game. and beyond. in different ways’ “It won’t be easy. Leeds has in some ways talked about its “We had hoped that the first round position for years and years decisions and more importantly the McLean says that the early days but has performed explanation of them would be out of the LEP are crucial, to get it economically below that. before the round two process “set up well with clear objectives opened. But there has been very and clear deliverables”. little feedback.” ‘Other cities have When asked what he would like to McLean says that Government made it easier to achieve in his time as chairman, he involvement is “improving”. says: “Not in specific terms, in do business’ “There is a more concerted simplistic terms what you have got approach from Government, they to see is the area working closely clearly want to make it work and “Leeds has done well legally together to deliver economic growth and financially but relied too have to make it work. and employment growth. much on that and not focused on other sectors enough. “We have had a far too fragmented “We have had trams, ‘...what you have got economy and far too fragmented economic districts [haven’t approach in the past.” happened]. Real economic to see is the area progress - can you remember working closely He feels the relatively new team a lot? Not really. at the top of Leeds City Council, together to deliver “We have been going leader, Labour councillor Keith along nicely but we have been economic growth and Wakefield and chief executive telling ourselves that we are Tom Riordan, is a benefit. a great international city. We employment growth’ have to be harshly realistic. “I think it’s a help they are both open “The job is to get public to change. One of the issues we and private sectors working “There is a cross department are talking about is a change of together.” group to talk to to get speedy mindset. We have to get people Part of it has been decisions. They have said they want thinking in different ways. complacency and I don’t think to listen to business and put flesh we have had the dynamic civic “We have got to have some leadership with clear aims on the bones.” radical ideas. I think Tom going into and ambitions that have He says he has not put a time limit the authority, he knows the region, convinced the private sector. on his involvement with the LEP. is well connected, Keith is Other cities have made it supportive of change. easier to do business, that has “My agreement is that we will review put people off. it after a year. We didn’t know “And neither do I have any “I don’t really think we have whether this would work out and concerns about any of the other been hungry for business,” whether I was right for the councils leaders,” he adds quickly, showing he adds starkly. and they are right for me. his skill for diplomacy. In association with:P7 - Leeds City Region supplement - May 2011
  8. 8. In association with:P8 - Leeds City Region supplement - May 2011
  9. 9. Growing optimism on City Region’s economic future - by James Reed BEFORE the global economic landscape changed three years ago, the Leeds City Region was flying high. Development was widespread, Leeds itself had successfully positioned itself as one of the leading financial centres outside of London, and the local economy was thriving and given an additional boost by a prolonged dose of significant public sector spending. Bridgewater Place has helped boost the image of the Leeds City Region The credit crunch threatened to turn all that upside down. Iconic “But the “We talk about the rebalancing away projects such as the “kissing doom and from financial services but if you towers” went on hold, suddenly gloom of look closely at what is said by out of tune with the rising mood of January Government, they are not talking austerity, and grim predictions 2009, after about downsizing financial services, surfaced that this would be a the autumn they are talking about greater recession that targeted the white and winter of growth in other areas. collar industries. discontent, Howard Kew Chief Executive, didn’t come to A new Government dramatically Financial Leeds pass. Over ‘...we outperformed cutting public spending and the course of committed to ‘rebalancing’ the the financial crisis and immediate the rest of the UK economy away from financial aftermath we outperformed the rest and particularly services posed a further threat. of the UK and particularly outperformed London.” outperformed London’ The reality of the last three years, however, has not been anywhere That gap in performance was the near as grim as the doom difference between losing 17,000 “For all the emphasis on merchants suggested, according to jobs in the regional economy. engineering, manufacturing, low According to Kew, the diversity of carbon - all of which are Howard Kew, chief executive of the financial and professional important - the biggest engine for Financial Leeds. services and a creative approach growth remains financial and taken by firms - cutting hours professional services.” “During the healthy phase of the rather than jobs and seeking new economy in the first eight years of That optimism is echoed by markets - helped the City Region’s the century we saw compound resilience. Sarah Day, new managing partner growth in the sector of around 6 or at DLA Piper’s Leeds office. 7% over that period. Then we hit But with a Government intent on the buffers and I think there was a reducing the economy’s reliance on “What we have seen over the last lot of concern that having achieved financial services, doesn’t that pose 18 months is a lot of corporate above average growth that that a real problem for an area that has activity. In the last five or six could get reversed very quickly. put itself in that space? months we have seen an upturn In association with:P9 - Leeds City Region supplement - May 2011
  10. 10. in people going to the debt markets again. “There’s still a Sarah Day nervousness Managing Partner, around. Our DLA Piper litigation and restructuring teams are very busy but there is much more optimism, albeit cautious.” Looking ahead, Day says the Leeds: an example for others of future growth in the UK firm is expecting to see growth in sectors such as waste business in the region as the public know the new local enterprise management and energy as well sector withdraws from direct partnership will be looking at is the as financial services. provision of services. “Where public-private axis and we think there are challenges there are Leeds is very well placed to make She also forecasts opportunities for opportunities and one of things we the most of that.” Historic company looks ‘...we expect to see to the future growth in sectors such as waste For more than 150 years, and upgrading gears in existing management and David Brown Gear wind turbines, the company has Systems has been also started developing its own energy as well as products in the field targeting the adapting its gear expertise growing offshore market. financial services’ to the demands of new technology. ‘Turbines are typically While the creation of local And as the green energy revolution begins to pick up pace enterprise partnerships has put a justified on the it is doing so again with a new new emphasis on local focus on wind turbines. basis that they will economies, Day is keen to see “If you had to characterise what last for 20 years...’ the City Region continue to project the core of our gear making it is itself as part of a much broader that we specialise in supplying area, particularly in the inward It has also worked with the Leeds customers who need an absolute investment context. City Region Local Enterprise assurance against failure. They need to know that once we have Partnership and Kirklees Council installed our gearing it is not to successfully bid for £2m of “If you are looking at inward coming out again,” says Ian Government funding to help investment Leeds is tiny on a Farquhar, managing director for establish a new research and global scale but as soon as you wind energy. innovation centre that will help expand that you have got a very demonstrate the company’s attractive proposition. When you “Turbines are typically justified on expertise to potential clients and the basis that they will last for 20 are trying to compete with China years and yet their gear boxes foster collaborations with academics from the University of they are not going to be looking typically need repairing after six at 1.1m people but they are going to 10 years. But we know that our Huddersfield. gear boxes for other applications to be interested in a wider area “We see this as a new growing might last for 40 to 50 years.” that has great manufacturing, market where we can set new professional services, energy, Initially focusing on overhauling standards,” says Farquhar. expertise and so on.” In association with:P10 - Leeds City Region supplement - May 2011
  11. 11. Nicola Spence sees that ability to work across the City Region and beyond in The economic outlook order to appeal to the - an SME perspective wider world as critical to the Companies in the Leeds City Region success of the are working harder each year to local generate the same level of business. economy. But it’s tough out there. Nicola Spence Chief Executive, Science City, York As chief The economy is unlikely to bounce back to pre executive of 2008 levels in the near future so businesses Science City York she is well-placed need to react accordingly. to identify the sectors where the Jonathan Hirst A major impact for business owners is that, Leeds City Region could lead in the Partner, ITogether more than ever, they scrutinise all spend, UK and even the world. She points particularly that which doesn’t directly generate revenue. That puts to healthcare, digital technology and particular pressure on areas like IT. bioscience as just some of the areas where the City Region boasts The challenge for companies like ours is to turn these threats into cutting edge expertise. opportunities. In our case we’ve reshaped the firm to enable businesses to harness the benefits of technology without drawing their attention away from the front line and rebranded from Network Integration to ITogether to better ‘We need more inward explain how we work. investment, to attract It is the regional firms that can ‘...we’ve reshaped businesses that others demonstrate that ability to can cluster around’ change quickly to meet new the firm to enable expectations that will continue businesses to to thrive even in the challenging times ahead. harness the benefits But she argues, important building blocks need to be put in Jonathan Hirst, partner, of technology...’ place if the area is to achieve its ITogether. potential. “We need more inward investment, For Spence, these issues are to attract some major businesses crystalised in the debate about ‘...what are the roads that others can cluster around. the location of the enterprise We have to work much harder at and the other forms of zone earmarked for the City showing business it is easy to come transport we need to Region. and work with us, it is easy to access the knowledge we have. make it easy to do “We need to decide how we are We need to make it as easy as business across the going to make the most of this possible to have the conversations exciting opportunity - not, as that produce ideas that turn into City Region?’ perhaps we might have done in businesses or collaboration. the past, looking at somewhere that’s really not doing very well “We have got eight universities in “We also need to ask what are and needs something . Let’s the Leeds City Region and three the pieces of infrastructure focus our efforts where we can of the top 10 in the UK so we have missing, what are the roads and put an enterprise zone that can to ask why we are not doing as well the other forms of transport we need really accelerate the economy on inward investment as other to make it easy to do business and attract businesses, start-ups parts of the country? across the City Region?” and spinouts.” In association with:P11 - Leeds City Region supplement - May 2011
  12. 12. In association with:P12 - Leeds City Region supplement - May 2011
  13. 13. Building for the future Property development and Physical regeneration can drive the recovery - by Ian Briggs construction may have been hit hard by the economic downturn but the role of physical regeneration to drive the economy cannot be underestimated. Take a look today around the Leeds City Region’s towns and cities and for many observers the perspectives may appear bleak. At many sites work has stopped, or in some cases never started, as the Bradford’s key regeneration project, the six-acre City Park effects of public sector spending cuts, bank financing restrictions and gallery and centre for creative arts, comes from physical work going a loss of confidence in the sector The Hepworth Wakefield, as well on,” says Jennings. “It’s quite are all too visible. as new space for cafes, bars easy to say what you’re going to and restaurants. do in terms of ambitions, but it’s different to do it. Also in the West Yorkshire city, ‘Cranes can once the £140m Merchant Gate “But when you see something development’s second phase is being constructed it gives reality again be spotted on the underway. to these visions and people do then believe it. The consequence of horizon and scaffolding Developer Hammerson recently this is that when people see announced the submission of is a familiar sight...’ someone else getting on with it new plans for its major 1m sq ft they think ‘perhaps we ought to Eastgate Quarters retail scheme, start doing it’.” and construction work is on But despite national headlines schedule at the 13,500 capacity painting a bleak picture of Leeds Arena. development, there are signs in this ‘...other schemes are Across the region that things are picking up. now coming out of the city, a major Cranes can once again be spotted sign that on the horizon and scaffolding is a confidence is ground as a direct familiar sight at many sites which returning to result of Trinity Leeds’ have sat idle since the peak of the the market is property boom came to a showcased shuddering halt in 2008. at Land Jennings believes other schemes Gerald Jennings Securities’ Work has commenced on one of Portfolio Director - North, are now coming out of the ground Trinity Leeds Bradford’s key regeneration Land Securities as a direct result of Trinity Leeds. development, projects, the six-acre City Park, where work is on schedule for “You’re creating a virtuous circle giving the city a boost as Australian completion in spring 2013. and the circle gets bigger. It really developer Westfield’s proposed does come down to people seeing Broadway development in the city Gerald Jennings, Land Securities’ physical work come on.” centre continues to falter. portfolio director for the North, says the morale-boosting effect of Guy Barlow, head of the Leeds In Wakefield, the £100m Waterfront physical regeneration cannot be office of architects The Manser Wakefield project features a mix underestimated. Practice, also believes that physical of high-quality offices and regeneration can act as a catalyst residential buildings and a £26m “There’s a certain confidence that to help drive economic recovery, In association with:P13 - Leeds City Region supplement - May 2011
  14. 14. but only when it is “approached in City Region is the right way”. well placed. Pin factory “It is not a panacea, but it can generate employment in Ripley has tower points acted for a ahead construction in the short term, then number of create jobs in the longer term and investment Tower Works is a help stimulate growth,” he argues. funds which have property steeped in the Tim Field, who leads DLA Piper’s Nikolaj Dockree acquired past but its role today is Leeds property team, sounds a note Ripley Capital property in very much looking to of caution: “It’s very fragile out there; the region and Dockree believes the future. there’s no getting away from that. deals will continue because of the However, we are seeing some uplift Work has commenced to create amount of “high quality kit” available 18,000 sq ft of commercial and signs of activity. We’ve been and the good value they represent. doing some interesting work and space at the historic former banks are looking at doing “The Leeds City Region has offered pin factory, dating from 1864, transactions. rental growth prospects and good in Leeds. opportunities for money coming into The current phase of work at “However, those doing deals have the region as well as secure income Tower Works involves the got to be certain that every streams,” he says. stabilisation of one of the three conceivable angle has been listed chimneys and restoration covered. That fragility is there but a lot of people are trying to work ‘The Leeds City through these issues to get these deals done.” Region has offered Field said active sectors looking for rental growth property are healthcare, energy prospects and good from waste plants and transport and added that he is seeing an upturn opportunities...’ in activity for new developments and also SMEs moving into existing Tower Works: future development premises as business improves. “This all does position the Leeds restoration project for Leeds City Region very well going forward. Nikolaj Dockree, of Ripley Capital, From an occupational point of view and conversion of two listed a Yorkshire-based business which the region is in a good position to buildings with new build works with investors and partners cope. Private sector investment will elements, which will provide on the acquisition and ongoing continue to drive the region.” serviced office accommodation asset management of commercial and community space. property and development sites, Funding for key infrastructure The redevelopment will create says that despite some “inertia” in projects, such as a southern office accommodation to the investment market, the Leeds entrance to Leeds railway station, complement the Round Foundry Media Centre at Holbeck Urban Village. The future of the mixed-use Tower Works scheme had been cast into doubt because of cuts to public sector spending and as a Yorkshire Forward asset the regional development agency has stated it would like the site to be transferred to council control - a move refused by Ministers. However, despite ongoing worries about its future ownership, development work at the historic complex is welcome and is a confident sign that the Leeds City Region is investing in projects that will drive economic growth. Trinity Walk - Wakefield In association with:P14 - Leeds City Region supplement - May 2011
  15. 15. have been given the green light and regeneration projects to get started. “There’s huge benefits of these commentators believe schemes towns and cities approaching it in such as this, and transport However, the timetable for the a more collegiate way and they do improvements, can drive physical Government’s planned introduction have to appreciate that Leeds is regeneration and vice-versa. of TIF legislation, which is already the predominant commercial available in Scotland, remains location in the City Region.” Jennings believes a number of uncertain and question marks conditions have to be in place to remain about how it will work. create successful developments. Martin Farrington, director of city ‘...superfast broadband He says: “There’s been a school development at Leeds City Council, of thought that providing a building says: “A new funding mechanism and business rate is the be all and end all. We’ve like TIF is important. The private discounts are located built buildings and thought it’s sector is still risk averse and the been a regenerative force for good banking sector still hasn’t fully in the Leeds City but some high profile structures recovered. The public sector doesn’t have remained empty. have the funds it once could Region...’ generate to make things happen. “The location has to be right; the infrastructure has to be right; there “A mechanism like TIF is an Pearey, who has called for a has to be a supportive planning example of where cash could be ‘Greater Leeds’ brand to be created, regime and a demand for the project brought forward to invest in the adds: “Collaboration is a really big being produced. The key infrastructure challenge.” discussion point because there’s a fundamentals need to still exist.” strong view that we would do better Jeff Pearey, as a region if there was an head of the acceptance that Leeds is the Leeds office heartbeat and everything else within ‘Collaboration is the of property the City Region will grow and watchword for many agent Jones flourish as a consequence of Lang LaSalle, Leeds’s improving economy.” members of the who believes emphasis will Alex Munro, region’s property be put on Jeff Pearey the head of community’ Head of Leeds Office, new property commercial Jones Lang LaSalle development agency because of a development Asked which factors would help recent “stasis” in the market, adds: at Knight the property sector recover and “I think TIF could help to a degree Frank in drive regeneration in the Leeds but I think traditional finance Leeds, said: City Region, Field said there methods will come back. And we’re “There has Alex Munroe would need to be a combination on the eve of them coming back. It Head of Commercial been strong coming together. only needs one or two funds coming Agency Development, leadership back in for it to get going.” Knight Frank from officers These include banks increasing within the local authorities and the lending, the return of consumer Collaboration is the watchword for leaders and we need them to be confidence, the slowdown of many members of the region’s bold and lead from the front.” companies facing restructuring or property community, who want to collapse, a number of National see towns and cities work more Asset Management Agency The Government’s decision for closely together to boost the City properties coming onto the market an enterprise zone, offering Region’s property prospects. following the collapse of the Irish relaxed planning rules, superfast property sector, the creation of an Jennings points across the broadband access and business enterprise zone in the City Region, Pennines to Manchester where a rate discounts, to be located in and the use of Tax Increment the Leeds City Region gives the number of towns have been happy Financing (TIF). potential for a major boost to the to align themselves together to create a powerful brand for potential property sector. How regeneration schemes are to be financed is currently a hot topic property investors. and TIF - through which the Farrington suggests that the Government will lend to councils “There is perhaps a bit more of a Leeds City Region enterprise zone against the promise of increased parochial manner in the Leeds City could generate more benefits if it is revenue from future business Region and independence can be sector specific, potentially focusing rates - is being seen as a vital positive but it doesn’t help the on green sustainable or health way for property and collective,” he says. medical markets. In association with:P15 - Leeds City Region supplement - May 2011
  16. 16. Singing off the same Collective voice and achievable hymn sheet aims needed for City Region’s success - by Ian Briggs Attendees: David Parkin - Managing Director, Neil Williams - Regional Director for Yorkshire, Santander Corporate Banking Nick Machugh - Relationship Director, Round Table: Wednesday 18th May 2011 Santander Corporate Banking THE Leeds City Region within the City Region to work Sarah Day must establish a “script” more closely together, as, it was - Leeds office Managing that can be backed by Partner, DLA Piper business and set realistic targets if it wants to be ‘There is lots of Neil McLean seen as a leading dynamism but I think - Chairman of the Leeds City economic player across the image from the south Region Local Enterprise the globe. Partnership That was the key message to is anything but that’ emerge from a Round Table Nikolaj Dockree discussion of leading advisers, financiers and business people argued, is the case with Manchester - Director of property asset who debated the future of the and its neighbouring towns. manager Ripley Capital Leeds City Region. The event Neil McLean, chairman of the was held at the Leeds offices of Leeds City Region Local Enterprise Jeff Pearey law firm DLA Piper. Partnership, described the City Region as a “very entrepreneurial - Director and Head of Leeds With the abolition of regional area”, with a strong business office, Jones Lang LaSalle development agency Yorkshire start-up agenda. Forward and the creation of a local However, McLean said more enterprise partnership in the City needed to be done to promote the David McNicholas Region, panellists called on the City Region’s brand and image, both - Financial Director, AFI-Uplift business community to set the in the UK and overseas, to help area’s own direction. attract inward investment, and he Roger Marsh How to make the best of the City called for more focus to be given to Region’s world leading attributes, identifying the “key priorities” to - Senior Partner, PwC achieve this. such as the cutting edge reserach Leeds office coming out of its universities, was “There is lots of dynamism but I discussed, as were sectors including think the image from the south is Gerald Jennings manufacturing and professional and anything but that,” he said. “But what financial services. do people want to know that will - Portfolio Director, attract them here? Could we attract Land Securities, Leeds There was also a collective call a Microsoft, Apple or Sun for the different local authorities Microsystems? In association with:P16 - Leeds City Region supplement - May 2011
  17. 17. “Everyone is on the same page about what we need to do. The LEP is the co-ordinator to bring things together. We’ve got a real opportunity. Be it the public or private sector side everyone wants to pull in the right direction. “Customers at present are saying what’s needed of me, can I contribute and what are the benefits of the LEP? It’s in everyone’s interests to get the City Region going.”’s David Parkin ‘...a key role for the “We need something to hang the spent a lot of money doing it.” board of the LEP is message on. The potential is huge. We need to package it and we David McNicholas, financial to work closely with need to sell it.” director at Wakefield-based lift and safety equipment business the private sector’ There was agreement around the AFI-Uplift, agreed but said more table that clear targets had to be needed to be done to engage with set for the Leeds City Region to be small businesses. successful. McLean, who described the Leeds “I agree there needs to be a script. City Region as a “world stage Roger Marsh, senior partner in the We need to be clear on it and sell economy”, added that a key role for Leeds office of PwC, argued that it. For many SMEs this is going to the board of the LEP was to work under Yorkshire Forward, the be a massive engagement job and closely with the private sector. regional development agency that if you have the script for these small has been scrapped, too many goals businesses it’s what they’re after. If “The key job (for the LEP) is to were set that weren’t achievable. you can’t explain it in 30 seconds start pulling all these themes you’re in trouble. together, selling it and promoting it He said: “We ought to be saying the better - upskilling it more. We also economy in the Leeds City Region “We’re a £36m turnover business need to get the private sector back is going to go from £52bn to £65bn and it’s about how the LEP will to investing.” or whatever. engage with us. For example we’re struggling to recruit young people.” McLean said he had been impressed by the “dynamism” of the Neil Williams, Yorkshire regional private sector in the North West and ‘If you can set realistic director for Santander Corporate asked if there was the same buy-in objectives and a Banking called for “output targets” in the Leeds City Region. and “priority sectors” to be set in the small number you can City Region. “The private sector has been asking what is the LEP going to do for us? achieve them’ “Let’s take an aggressive agenda And that’s the wrong question. The to government and tell them about LEPs have been set up in a blaze the toolset we need,” Williams said. of publicity but with no structure. “Manchester has a hymn sheet and is singing from it. We need to do the same to bring together the powers of this region. If you can set realistic objectives and a small number you can achieve them. The Leeds City Region has 143 initiatives and that is not very prioritised. “For example we could say let’s put LCR on the BRIC map. That’s pretty powerful and better than saying let’s build something in Heckmondwike. “We should be saying to people in London come up and see the LCR. And when they do, let’s have the script we have been talking about. The RDAs tried to do everything but did nothing and Sarah Day - DLA Piper Leeds office Managing Partner In association with:P17 - Leeds City Region supplement - May 2011
  18. 18. And there’s a level of misunderstanding (about the LEP). “The right question should be ‘what can we do together to revitalise the economy?’. It’s absolutely a partnership.” Marsh said the LEP could become “a lubricant” to help the City Region achieve its goals when they are drawn up. “On a national level we need to see that Britain is open for business and then what needs to happen is for this region to come out and say these are the kinds of business we Gerald Jennings - Portfolio Director, Land Securities, Leeds (left), Nikola Dockree want to attract here,” he said. - Director of property asset manager Ripley Capital (right) “If you look at Yorkshire there location as an office. I can very much which are both set to open in 2013. are some unique facets; let’s see see us working together as a region them as a core from which to and I think we can only benefit.” He said: “It’s about harnessing that achieve things.” willingness of having a partnership She cited the opportunities that wind and then delivering it because talk energy will provide across the City is cheap. We have a mind-set that ‘I can very much see Region and called on the media to says ‘why not’ rather than ‘why’.” be positive about its prospects. us working together Jeff Pearey, head of the Leeds office Nikolaj Dockree, of Yorkshire-based of commercial property agent Jones as a region and I think property asset manager Ripley Lang LaSalle, said he had helped Capital, said the LCR was a “poor to produce a ‘top 10 facts’ we can only benefit’ cousin” to other areas in terms of promotional pack about the Leeds infrastructure and said this was a office market and a similar vital area for improvement. He also approach would be welcomed for Sarah Day, who has taken over from said corporation tax rates were the City Region. McLean as the new managing putting busineses off from locating partner in the Leeds office of DLA to the region. Piper in Leeds, said that instead of competing with Manchester, the He said: “Infrastructure needs to ‘it’s so important to Leeds City Region should take be driven by the LEP as Leeds advantage of its benefits and Day hasn’t achieved in this field get the key focus called on businesses to make more previously. Someone really needs started and the right use of its infrastructure benefits, to drive this forward.” such as its airport. Gerald Jennings, Land Securities’ messages for the LCR’ “We’re a bit behind the game in portfolio director who heads the terms of this region thinking as a company’s Leeds office, suggested region,” she said. “At DLA Piper, the City Region should harness the Pearey said although the office local business is important to us delivery of the Trinity Leeds market in the City Region was and it’s important we have a local shopping centre and Leeds Arena, largely flat, there had been an increase in demand from recruitment and training providers, which he said was a positive sign for the regional economy. “I’m delighted about the conversation around the table because it’s so important to get the key focus started and the right messages for the LCR. Let’s keep developing that script as it’s so essential.” McLean added: “If you can show things are being delivered then people will stay enthused. This is a 20 year project or so at least and Neil Williams - Regional Director for Yorkshire, Santander Corporate Banking explains could potentially have no end.” In association with:P18 - Leeds City Region supplement - May 2011