If the Midlands was the birthplace of the industrial revolution, Birmingham’s it’s beating heart.
And it still excels as an economic centre — Business Birmingham reports that it has the highest number of employees of any city outside London, boasts more job-creation from foreign investment than any other region and has the highest quality of life of any English city bar the capital.
It’s also the second-best place in Britain to launch a startup — so whether you’re interested in investing in a Brum business or want some top tips on the best food and tech on offer, here’s why it’s buzzing for business.
Food and drink
If you’re a bit of a foodie, you’ll be glad to know that Birmingham’s one of Britain’s best places to tingle your taste buds and quench your thirst.
Last year, travel site Booking.com revealed that the city had entered the UK’s top three for edible delights — thanks to the availability of high-quality international street food, innovative ethnic eateries and no less than five Michelin-starred restaurants.
With its comfortable and airy interior and sensational menu, Simpson’s in Edgbaston might be the pick of the bunch for haute cuisine. Try the tasting menu featuring cured salmon with pink grapefruit, Aberdeenshire beef with avruga caviar and gilthead seabream with fermented cauliflower — uncommonly good.
But Brum’s culinary calendar is also ram-packed with eclectic events all year round that satisfy fans of every food niche.
The We Are Balsall Health Street Festival is held annually in April and includes delicious culture clash dishes, a games zone and live performances and June’s Pizza and Prosecco Festival at Boxxed in Digbeth is brilliant fun too.
But if you’ve got a sweet tooth, attending the Cake International expo is the hot ticket you must grab hold of.
The three-day celebration of cake culture hosts renowned confectionery artisans like Lara Mason, whose photorealistic cake recreation of Harry and Meghan went viral as soon as it was unveiled.
In between snaffling delish samples, there’s the opportunity to attend precision piping workshops and masterclass demonstrations with the world’s best bakers.
As the UK’s second-largest city, Birmingham’s a terrific destination for tech startups — in fact, the latest Centre for Entrepreneurs data confirms it has more than any other UK area outside London.
The city’s been bolstered by the commercial potential of hosting the 2022 Commonwealth Games and the installation of pro-business mayor Andy Street, former chief exec of John Lewis.
According to Tech City UK, Brum has 70 dynamic tech industry meetup groups where entrepreneurs share knowledge on everything from the latest data analytics trends to cutting-edge web development.
If there’s too many to choose from, approach Silicon Canal. This not-for-profit organisation helps connect the city’s 6000 tech firms and 38,300 employees — while providing investment advice for new enterprises, experienced mentoring and networking events.
The sector’s supported by 18 universities within an hour’s drive of Birmingham which provide a steady stream of skilled graduates.
And if Birmingham sounds like a fulfilling career destination, but family comments mean full-time campus-based learning isn’t viable, studying with Anglia Ruskin Distance Learning for an online digital marketing degree is an excellent alternative.
Whether you’re looking for top tech services for your own firm, are an angel investor with cash to splash or a mid-life career converter who wants to work in an exciting environment, Birmingham fits the bill.
There are several great reasons Brum’s buzzing for business and those above are just the tip of a tasty iceberg — visit soon to get stuck into the main course.
Do you work in Birmingham food or tech? Tell us why it’s special in the comments section.