York­shire needs to act fast as Lon­don loses its lus­tre

Yorkshire Post - Business - - BUSINESS - Bernard Ginns ■ Email: bernard. ginns@ ypn. co. uk ■ Twit­ter: @ york­shire­post

THE EX­O­DUS has be­gun.

Vast swathes of young peo­ple are de­sert­ing Lon­don, priced out of a cap­i­tal that bears in­creas­ingly lit­tle re­sem­blance to the coun­try that it feeds off.

Re­search by the Of­fice for Na­tional Sta­tis­tics for the Sil­ver­town Part­ner­ship in­di­cated that 128,766 peo­ple aged 21- 40 left Lon­don in 2014 – a rise of seven per cent on the year be­fore.

This chimes with what Nick Owen, the UK chair­man of Deloitte, told me about his firm’s real es­tate strat­egy over the com­ing decade.

He be­lieves that re­gional of­fices will be­come in­creas­ingly at­trac­tive to young peo­ple with tal­ent. Mr Owen said: “We have no­ticed in the last two or three years, the chal­lenge not just for the peo­ple we want to bring into the busi­ness at new grad­u­ate level but also for them with their de­pen­dents, the cost of the South East has be­come pro­hib­i­tive.”

With hun­dreds if not thou­sands of va­can­cies for soft­ware de­vel­op­ers in York­shire, our re­gion should be mak­ing a se­ri­ous play for this tal­ent.

I was pleased to learn yes­ter­day that plans are al­ready afoot to mar­ket this grow­ing sec­tor to mil­len­ni­als who are look­ing for a bet­ter qual­ity of life out­side of the cap­i­tal.

The newly launched Leeds Dig­i­tal Skills Ac­tion Plan in­cludes plans for a dig­i­tal ca­reers fair in the cap­i­tal be­fore the end of the year. It will build on the suc­cess of last month’s in­au­gu­ral Dig­i­tal Jobs Fair, which was or­gan­ised by Amy De- Balsi, of the tech jobs web­site Herd and at­tracted 1,300 can­di­dates and 33 re­cruit­ing com­pa­nies from York­shire.

All this re­minded me of the con­ver­sa­tion I had with Joe Ing­ham, a fash­ion model who re­turned from the cap­i­tal to start his own fash­ion busi­ness, Nurag Cloth­ing.

The 23- year- old York­shire­man has mod­elled on cat­walks in Lon­don, Paris, Mi­lan and Tokyo for fash­ion de­sign­ers in­clud­ing Lan­vin, Raf Si­mons, Rick Owens and Diesel.

He is now work­ing in York­shire with lo­cal seam­stress Liza Vi­o­let and Leeds man­u­fac­turer Eurostar Cloth­ing to pro­duce his col­lec­tion.

Mr Ing­ham launches his col­lec­tion in Leeds this Thurs­day. He said: “I want to show­case the North as a great place for tal­ent. Not ev­ery­thing needs to be in Lon­don.”

■ I was not sad­dened to learn that City hedge funds have lost hun­dreds of mil­lions of dol­lars since the start of the year af­ter their bear­ish wa­gers against min­ing stocks turned sour.

The Fi­nan­cial Times re­ported that the FTSE 100’ s two worstper­form­ing stocks of 2015, An­glo Amer­i­can and Glen­core, have both seen their prices al­most dou­ble since the start of the year.

Spec­u­la­tors have been bet­ting against min­ers as a way to make money out of China’s eco­nomic slow­down, but the bounce in com­mod­ity prices has sparked a resur­gence in the nat­u­ral re­source sec­tor and de­liv­ered a bloody nose to the City spivs.

Hull- based Fen­ner, which sup­plies in­dus­trial belt­ing to the min­ing sec­tor, has seen its shares re­cover since their low of 98p on Fe­bru­ary 3. Shares were trad­ing at 140p yes­ter­day.

Stock­bro­ker Peel Hunt said the rise re­flects an im­prove­ment in sec­tor sen­ti­ment and grow­ing con­fi­dence that the group’s bal­ance sheet has suf­fi­cient head­room.

Act­ing chief ex­ec­u­tive Mark Abra­hams is due to up­date the City later this week.

An­a­lyst Do­minic Con­vey said: “While we can­not rule out fur­ther down­grades next week, re­flect­ing the de­te­ri­o­ra­tion in US coal and oil and gas mar­kets since Jan­uary, we re­main con­fi­dent that re­cent bal­ance sheet fears were ex­ces­sive.

“We be­lieve that the cost ac­tions to date have en­sured the group will weather the cur­rent en­vi­ron­ment and more cru­cially, is well po­si­tioned to ben­e­fit from the even­tual re­cov­ery.

“Ahead of the half year pre­close up­date on Thurs­day, we re­tain our 150p tar­get price and Buy rec­om­men­da­tion.”

Like Fen­ner’s con­veyer belts, what goes around, comes around.

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