SUNDERLAND – a smart, sustainable, learning city nurturing enterprise and business investment. Businesses, from micros to multinationals, are thriving in Sunderland.
The city’s collaborative approach and commitment to success lie behind its leading national position as a business location, especially in the automotive and growing software sector.
Sunderland is leading the field for business start-ups as Royal Mail figures show it was the fastest growing postcode area for new businesses between March and September 2010.
Sunderland City Council is driving forward this entrepreneurial spirit which has helped to create more than 8,000 jobs in seven years.
Coun Paul Watson, leader of Sunderland City Council, said: “We work hard to make sure our businesses succeed.”
The sustainability of the big names based in the city –including Nissan, Rolls-Royce, Deutsche Bahn, EDF Energy, Barclays, Liebherr, NPower, Lloyds TSB, T-Mobile, Nike and Berghaus – is matched by a host of smaller, innovative local companies setting up and growing strongly across its many business locations.
Sunderland’s clear-sighted, welcoming, dynamic approach to business and investment has made a significant difference to the quality and quantity of companies which have decided to set up their operations in the city.
The city’s workforce, modern offices and industrial parks, and excellent transport links, mean that businesses of all sizes benefit by being in Sunderland. Plus, the city council and its partners continue to accelerate economic activity and drive innovation.
PLAN FOR GROWTH
Sunderland is one of only a handful of UK cities to develop a 15-year masterplan for economic growth, and this plan offers further opportunities to develop the city’s economy.
The plan has set out the direction of the city’s economy up to 2025 and the roles its business, university, college, public and voluntary sector partners can perform by working together and underpinning strong, focused future growth.
More than 50 software companies are now in the city and a new city centre hub for software development is being built near Mowbray Park. The building will help create more than 140 new jobs and retain more hi-tech talent.
This Sunderland Software Centre complements the city council’s state-of-the-art Evolve business centre at Rainton Bridge and the North East Business and Innovation Centre at Sunderland Enterprise Park on the northern banks of the Wear.
In the low carbon economy, as in the software sector, Sunderland is ahead of the game with the government choosing the city as the UK’s Low Carbon Economic Area for Ultra Low Carbon Vehicles and Nissan announcing that it will manufacture electric vehicle batteries and the 100% electric Nissan LEAF at its Sunderland plant.
Elsewhere, Sunderland sees itself making the most of opportunities for growth from the offshore wind sector through the strengths of the Port of Sunderland. When the port’s resources are combined with the skills of the local workforce, the city has a distinctive edge in a fast-emerging energy sector.
The creative heritage of the city, too, is generating an exciting range of businesses, from glass artists creating stunning original works to original performance artists in music, comedy and acting, all contributing to a vibrant Sunderland buzz.
A key to the city’s dynamism is the University of Sunderland with the 15-year Economic Masterplan placing Sunderland as a ‘new kind of university city’. The growing emphasis on the knowledge economy and the importance of a skilled workforce means that the university and the city will interlink more and more, attracting and retaining talented people, and sparking new businesses and research.
Janet Snaith, the city council’s head of business investment, said: “Times have been tough but we have strong partnerships across the city. We have a track record of making things happen in Sunderland.
“We all have a shared passion and commitment for success and this gives all our businesses a strong platform for growth in the future.”
Get in touch with the Business Investment Team by ringing 0191 561 1166, or you can email neil.clasper@ sunderland.gov.uk, or write to the team at Evolve, Sunderland City Council, Cygnet Way, Rainton Bridge South Business Park, DH4 5QY.
Sunderland is one of only a handful of UK cities to develop a 15-year masterplan for economic growth