Frank Ross: Tesco Bank jobs plan sign of recovery

Tesco Bank offices at South Gyle. Pic: Jane Barlow

Tesco Bank offices at South Gyle. Pic: Jane Barlow

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Edinburgh is home to two of the world’s top 150 financial services companies, and remains the UK’s largest financial centre outside of London.

We are a major European centre for asset management and servicing, with over £500 billion of funds under management in Edinburgh, and an emerging hub for green project finance.

Businesses further demonstrated their confidence in the quality of our workforce yesterday with the announcement by Tesco Bank to bring hundreds of new jobs to west Edinburgh, an area of the city which will be served by the new tram route.

The financial sector in Edinburgh employs 37,000 people and has weathered extremely tough times, showing great resilience by growing more than four cent since 2008. It is extremely diverse with huge strengths across banking, life insurance and pensions.

In recent years Edinburgh has really benefitted from several new banks emerging, which has been a huge change from the years of traditional banking where there were only a few players. Many have set up offices and headquarters in Edinburgh and this announcement is evidence that these banks are growing.

Other banks which have moved to Edinburgh recently or have significantly expanded their presence in the city in recent years are Sainsbury’s Bank, the UK Green Investment Bank, Virgin Money and Scoban, a small start-up bank based in the West End.

Having this combination of old and new across the sector bodes well for the future.

The creation of all of these jobs will also have a knock-on effect, and it is predicted that around 10,000 new jobs will be created by 2023 in the business service sector alone. This includes professions such as marketing, law and accountancy, which offer services to the financial as well as other sectors.

The combination of our growing financial and business service sectors is a great boost for our Strategy for Jobs, launched last year, and our aspiration that everyone across the private and public sectors should pull together to keep Edinburgh’s economy growing.

Frank Ross is economic development convener at Edinburgh City Council