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Global Reach 2021: The number of Northern companies with global operations has more than doubled in eight years


The number of Northern-based companies with global operations has more than doubled in the last eight years.

The Global Reach 2021 Report has identified 538 Northern companies who employ over seven million people globally, a big jump from the 250 discovered when the report was first compiled in 2013.

The new report was commissioned by Prolific North – in association with Manchester Metropolitan University’s School of Digital Arts (SODA) – in a bid to explore the performance of the region’s tech, marketing, media and creative companies on a global stage.

It highlights the continuing global expansion of Northern businesses, which now contribute $1.81 trillion in global turnover.

The Hut Group is the top global employer headquartered in the North, employing 7,000 people, followed by the NCC group with 1,700 employees.

The Northern-based company with the largest revenue is Crewe-headquartered Radius Payment Solutions, with £2.6bn. 

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The Hut Group is the top global employer headquartered in the North

The report’s full findings will be revealed at a dedicated Global Reach Summit, hosted in Manchester at KPMG’s Northern headquarters in Manchester on Thursday November 11th.

The event – which has also been supported by GC Business Growth Hub and UKAEG – will feature guest speakers and a selection of roundtable discussions dedicated to the report’s key themes.

The exclusive research – which comes eight years after Prolific North’s Global Reach pilot – has identified more than 500 Northern-based companies who now have a global footprint.

That compares to around 250 companies identified in the last report in 2013.

A webinar highlighting the report’s preliminary findings – and sponsored by Beever and Struthers – was held in May and featured the likes of Katy Leeson, MD of Social Chain, and Nickii Gray, Chief Executive Partner of Intermarketing (now IMA).

Global Reach Summit 2021

Attendees at the Summit on November 11th will exclusively receive a copy of the complete Global Reach report. 

There will also be two keynote speakers, to be announced, and an excellent opportunity to network with senior individuals within the sector.

Four roundtable discussions at the event will be dedicated to the report’s key themes, and will focus on the following areas:

  • Common issues associated with international expansion – navigating time zones, language barriers and cultural diversity
  • How the North is responding to the tech explosion – is the skills shortage a reality, and what can be done about it
  • Northern hotspots – which areas are doing particularly well on a global scale, and what are they doing well
  • Why don’t more international companies have a Northern headquarters

The event will give attendees the opportunity to learn, listen and engage with peers about the place of the North within a global setting, and the current opportunities for companies looking to expand their international footprint. 

Register your interest to attend the Global Reach Summit 2021

To register your interest in attending and taking part in the roundtables, enter your details in the form below: 



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