4 March, 2008 – Sporting rivalries could bring investment opportunities
While the critical Champions League match between Manchester United and Olympique Lyonnais may be on most people's minds, inward investment chiefs from both cities are making sure the big match is a crucial fixture in promoting the benefits of doing business in their cities.
Before the first leg of the Champions League clash in Lyon on 20th February, representatives from MIDAS, Manchester’s inward investment agency met with some of Lyon’s top business leaders.
At the event, held at Lyon’s Chamber of Commerce and Industry, MIDAS met with over 20 directors from large Lyon-based companies in the biotechnology, life science and service sectors such as Arkema and Suez.
As well as providing a forum for further raising awareness of the Manchester city region as a business location, the event marked the start of joint marketing operations for the two agencies, working together to share methods of best practice.
In return, ADERLY – the Economic Development Agency for the Lyon region – will today (Tuesday 4th March) meet with representatives from around 20 Greater Manchester-based companies. The event will provide the opportunity for local companies to discuss potential business and investment opportunities in Lyon.
Despite the rivalry between the two football teams hoping to secure a place in the top 8, Manchester and Lyon’s inward investment agencies have a strong partnership. In business terms, the two cities are very similar; both are ‘second cities’ with strong biotechnology and service sectors, world-class universities and good transport links.
"On the face of it, it would seem that there could only be rivalries between the two cities, in terms of football and in terms of business," says Colin Sinclair, Chief Executive of MIDAS. "However, working together like this can foster new business opportunities for both Manchester and Lyon and bring some real economic benefits.
"Whatever the result tonight, we will be working to bring long-term international investment opportunities from Lyon, France and across Europe."
Jacques De Chilly, Executive Director of ADERLY says, "In both football and business, Lyon aims to win – but we have respect for Manchester and aim to learn tactically from both United and MIDAS."