Moscow has been ranked the most desirable European city for companies to expand into for the second year running, according to a survey by global property consultant Cushman & Wakefield. The number of European companies which expect to locate in Moscow within the next five years has jumped to 57 from 47 in 2010.
Moscow remains the most attractive city for future corporate expansion in Europe.
London, Paris and Frankfurt remain the top three European cities in which to do business overall. Amsterdam has scored strongly this year, continuing the movement seen in 2010 to climb up to 4th place from 6th place. Berlin also performed well and moved into the top five, up two places from 7th position last year. There was also a large rise in the number of business leaders expecting to locate in the city. 23 respondents cited Berlin as the most favorable city in which to expand, almost double that of 2010 (12).
In its 22nd year, the European Cities Monitor report is based on interviews with board directors at 501 of the largest companies in Europe. It includes an overall ranking of which European city is considered to be 'best for business' and the 'best city in which to locate a business today'. In addition to this, 36 cities are ranked against criteria such as quality of life, access to markets, availability and quality of staff, cost of office space, telecommunications and transport links.
As well as increasing its lead as the number one city for companies to expand in, Moscow has also risen significantly in the ranking of best European cities in terms of easy access to markets. This year it takes 11th position, up from 19th in 2010.
Tim Millard, Managing Director of Cushman & Wakefield in Russia, said, "Moscow remains the most attractive city for future corporate expansion in Europe and is considered more than twice as important as the second place city as a driver of future corporate growth. This is being accelerated by very strong expansion in consumer spending, with the potential for this to be leveraged up considerably due to the current low levels of penetration of consumer credit, strong growth in B2B sales and large potential in regional cities beyond the traditional powerhouses of Moscow and St Petersburg.
"All of this activity is underpinned by strong GDP growth, continued high oil and gas prices and a very healthy level of foreign currency reserves. This growth in corporate activity will drive the next commercial property cycle and will give the bold investor the opportunity to earn significant returns from both income growth and capital appreciation."
Germany has more cities in the top 10 than any other country; Frankfurt (3rd), Berlin (5th) and Munich (9th).