Leeds is shedding its old, industrial image, for that of a modern, bustling conurbation. You don’t have to look far to find new businesses in this thriving city, but what is interesting is the old names being revitalised for the 21st century:
- What was once the Leeds Shopping Plaza went through a grand refurbishment to reopen in 2013 as Trinity Leeds, one of the most impressive and well performing shopping centres in the UK.
- Similarly, what was once Leeds Metropolitan University (home to 25,000 students), has since discarded the ‘Metropolitan’ (and its old-fashioned polytechnic associations) for the much more contemporary title of Leeds Beckett.
These are just two of Leeds’ biggest brands at the forefront of a city dedicated to changing its image for the better.
Nowadays, there is an excited atmosphere running throughout the whole region. New property developments in Leeds are beginning to appear again, and with new homes, come new residents and new businesses and innovations.
Not that Leeds isn’t proud of its past. It simply wants to celebrate its history, culture and unique identity, whilst thriving as a dynamic and adaptable 21st century city.
Although there are plenty of reasons for this grand rebrand, one of the major benefits will be how Leeds appears to foreign investors.
In a world where foreign direct investment is increasingly important (SEE: Manchester Welcomes Xi Jinping) Leeds has some strong competitors for attention. Without a famous band from the city, a Premiership team boasting its name or capital city status, Leeds’ name may not currently be quite so world famous.
However, Leeds is clearly a strong city to invest in with:
- A higher business rate growth than the national average
- The second largest city economy in the UK
- A city centre population that doubled from 2001 – 2011.
In reinventing itself, Leeds will gain the attention of investors in the UK and around the world. Whether looking for buy-to-let properties in Leeds (to cater for the growing population) or perhaps other investment opportunities, this city has a lot of options for any savvy investor.
Ultimately, by rebranding, the city is shifting others’ perception from its industrial past to a thriving modern-day self. And if all goes to plan, the city’s future will continue to flourish with both new and improved businesses, as well as inward and foreign interest and investment.