Manchester City Council chief executive Sir Howard Bernstein believes the city’s professional services community can lead the rebalancing of the UK economy.
Sir Howard made the comments while addressing an audience of business leaders at the launch of NorthEdge Capital’s £225million private equity fund for companies based in the North of England.
He said professionals in cities like Manchester and Leeds were vital in providing the funding and support for businesses in the North which would boost the economy outside the South East.
Sir Howard recently spoke of a ‘new era of collaboration’ between Manchester and Liverpool and is supportive of Northern regions working together to improve prosperity.
Grant Berry, managing partner of NorthEdge, said: “We absolutely share Sir Howard’s belief in the North of England as a driver for sustainable growth in the UK. Having just closed the largest first-time fund in Europe since the recession, we know that investors share our confidence in the North and vision for its future.
“Northern businesses are increasing market share in national and international markets. In the past decade the North West has created Europe’s leading hub for media and digital businesses at MediaCityUK. In the North East, Tyneside has undergone a reinvention and is now leading the way in scientific research, while Yorkshire is in the spotlight on the world stage by hosting the first leg of the Tour de France in 2014.”
The North has nurtured a buyout economy larger than those of Spain and Italy, comparable to the Nordics and two-thirds the size of both France and Germany. In the North, the average total annual transaction value in the £10million to £100million arena has been £4.5billion over the last decade.