United Kingdom

UK Housing Hits Record High

U.K. house prices hit a record high of £269,945 in September 2021 according to Bloomberg as buyers rushed to tie up deals before a property tax cut came to an end.

  • The data: Prices have soared by 15%—more than £35,000—since Rishi Sunak introduced a tax waiver in July 2020, Land Registry figures show. That dwarfs the £2,500 saving in stamp duty that the average buyer would have benefited from.
  • The drivers: While the stamp-duty holiday is one factor driving the boom, arguably more significant is a “race for space”—demand for larger properties away from city centers among people for whom homeworking is now the new normal.

    Source: Bloomberg

Pound Sterling on a Tear

The economic gloom is lifting so fast in the U.K. that even the skeptics are warming to the Pound Sterling which is up more than 4% from its January low. Thanks to one of the world’s fastest vaccine-rollout programs, the pound is winning fresh backing as the faster-than-expected recovery fuels speculation that the Bank of England is about to get hawkish.

ABN Amro, a long-time bear on the pound, just revised its pound forecast, as has Citigroup and bulls predict further gains too, with Nomura International Plc and Societe Generale SA seeing the pound erasing all its post-Brexit losses by year-end.

Source: Bloomberg

UK Home to Europe’s Tech Talent

Europe’s top technical and business schools remain key sources of entrepreneurial talent. Of the 10 institutions around the world whose alumni have founded European companies that have raised more than €1m, four institutions are based in the UK.

The UK is home to the largest European tech community, with nearly 200,000 active members in tech Meetup groups.

The UK is the number one destination for tech talent moving into – and within – Europe, with 21.5% of all international movers coming to the UK. This number gives the UK a notable lead over the second most popular country Germany, where 13.8% of tech talent migrates. UK remains a destination for EU tech talent with greater funding options.

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Dundee: Going Global

I’m visiting the city of Dundee, Scotland for the first time next week. Considering I’ve been in Scotland for almost seven years, it’s quite a shame it took me so long to break the Edinburgh-Livingston-Glasgow corridor to venture out to Dundee.

I’ll be kindly hosted by RBS and joining my Managing Partner Russell Dalgleish for a breakfast seminar on Tuesday, October 18th. I will particularly be sharing my journey from across the pond and offering valuable insights for Dundee business owners and entrepreneurs evaluating growth strategies beyond our borders.

Dundee is the home of the digital gaming industry in Scotland. No doubt when I think of the city, one of the first things that come to mind is the infamous Grand Theft Auto (GTA) video game. However, few people outside of Scotland realise Dundee is the home of the infamous game which kickstarted the genre of adult video games.

The city’s gaming industry is world class and has come a long way since DMA design developed the first version of GTA back in 1997. The latest game in the series, Grand Theft Auto V, sold more than 11 million copies in the first 24 hours generating £500m in turnover and is now the fourth highest-selling game of all time!

The success of GTA and Dundee’s gaming industry is a testament to the global potential of innovative products and solutions. I look forward to meeting with Dundee’s business leaders and sharing insights on how businesses from all sectors can go grow globally.

Seats are still available for Tuesday’s event so please join me, Russell, and RBS team including Simon Fraser and Emma Miller over coffee for three short presentations followed by Q&A discussion and networking.

Registration: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/rbs-driving-business-growth-to-create-value-tickets-27689215188