Foreign cash pouring into region’s businesses

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More than £700m of foreign investment has been ploughed into North West businesses in the first six months of 2014, according to business advisory firm Deloitte.

The latest North West Cross-Border Deals Radar shows that inbound activity remains consistently high following the completion of 26 deals, worth a total of £705m. Forty per cent of all inbound investment involved a North American corporate.

During the same period last year, there were 25 deals completed, worth £583m.

Some of the most notable deals from the first half of 2014 include Thomas Cook’s sale of Preston-based Gold Medal to Dubai-based dnata for £45m.

Another key outbound transaction was Manchester City’s acquisition of a 20pc stake in Japanese Yokohama F-Marinos.

That is seen as helping the club strengthen its partnerships overseas.

In contrast, the first half of 2013 also saw 16 deal completions, with a total value of £3.6bn.

This was largely accounted for by one big-ticket deal – the buyout of Hindustan for £3.5bn by consumer products giant Unilever, which operates sites in the Wirral and Trafford Park.

Aziz Ul-Haq, corporate finance partner at Deloitte in the North West, commented: “Foreign investment coming into the North West has increased by 20 per cent since last year and it is promising that cross-border deal volumes remain consistently high. “