As the world’s first industrial city, Manchester has come full circle to once again be a powerhouse of economic progress – and is the UK’s fastest growing regional economy. Voted the best overall choice for business in the UK outside London, the city is now attracting more and more national and international companies, all drawn by its competitiveness, transport links, and highly motivated and skilled workforce. Most recently, Amazon has announced plans to set up a central Manchester HQ.

Facts and figures


Manchester is the fastest-growing major city outside London, with a GVA of £62.8 billion, almost half the total of the North West.


Manchester city region offers a high-quality workforce of 7.2 million people within an hour’s commute of the city centre.


Transformational change is occurring, with committed investment of over £1 billion in and around the Greengate area.


100,000 students Greater Manchester’s four universities – the highest numbers in Europe – with a 71% graduate retention rate.


With an expanding city centre population, Manchester is 34% more affordable to live in than London.


Manchester welcomed over 1.3 million international visitors in 2017, making it the third most visited city in the UK.

£900 million

Manchester is rated England’s top shopping destination outside London with a huge £900m retail spend in the city centre every year.