Alistair Wesson of Mazars
Alistair Wesson, East Midlands Managing Partner at top ten accountancy firm, Mazars shares his thoughts and hopes for the professional and financial sectors in Nottingham in the coming year.
Over the past decade, the region has seen the introduction of many key players in the professional and financial sectors who have all chosen Nottingham as the home of their UK base.
One such key player is Ikano Bank which made the decision to conduct its UK business from a Nottingham base in 1994 and has grown substantially since.
Nottingham is also home to Capital One which opened up its head office right here in the city in 1996. Not only are they now a top ten card issuer but they have also won the UK best workplace award three years in a row from 2013.
Similarly, TDX Group, founded in 2004 and now an Equifax company after being acquired in 2014, also moved into their award winning new offices in Nottingham bolstering their UK presence and bringing more recognition to the region and the sector in general.
The ongoing trend in Fintech opens up further opportunities by creating space for innovation on how people transact in business whilst also opening the door for new technologies for data driven marketing, predicting behavioural analytics and machine learning.
This will help with financial decisions as new ‘learning’ apps will pick up the habits of its users enabling them to foresee and enhance investment choices. By hosting a network of businesses such as TDX, Capital One and Experian, this also forms an excellent driver for attracting premium talent to the region.
In the Midlands, there are a number of funding routes available for Fintech start-ups and as a result, we can expect encouraging growth and expansion in the sector to continue as more opportunities and support for these new businesses increases.
The number of positions available has also seen dramatic growth and, as with those in the information sector, jobs in the professional and financial services sector are now among the highest in demand regionally, nationally and indeed internationally.
Fintech business bring a variety of employment opportunities, for example for talented software developers who will be tasked with working on bringing further ground-breaking initiatives to market.
However, we’ve already seen more bank branch closures over the past twelve months and other financial institutions downsizing, and the potential flip side of this therefore could continue nationally in other areas of the UK as new technology continues to develop.
Nevertheless, overall, I would expect to see an increase in employment opportunities across Nottingham in particular and look forward to another promising year for the professional services and financial sectors this year.