Stockholm ‘less popular as business location’

Stockholm has fallen five places on a list of the best places in Europe to base a company, but is still the most business-friendly city in the Nordic region, according to a new survey.

The European Cities Monitor from real estate consultants Cushman & Wakefield put Stockholm as the 22nd best city in Europe in which to base a business. Last year the Swedish capital was in 17th place.

The survey was based on interviews with senior managers and directors at 500 major European companies. They put Stockholm ahead of other Nordic cities, but the Danes, Finns and Norwegians are closing the gap: Copenhagen is in 25th place on the list, up from 27th. Helsinki is in 29th place compared to 30th last year and Oslo in 32nd place, up from 33rd.

The Swedish capital ranked highly for its environment: the city was rated top in Europe for freedom from pollution. It also moved up the rankings for transport links with the outside world, landing at 21st place.

Stockholm fell in a number of categories. In terms of the availability of qualified staff, rated as the most important factor in business location, Stockholm dropped 11 places to 16th place. It dropped seven places to 14th for internal transport.

“The results of this year’s ECM survey come as a warning signal that Stockholm needs to work hard to consolidate and promote its position as the most important business centre in the Nordic region, as well as as a key business centre within Europe as a whole,” said Magnus Lange, Cushman & Wakefield’s Swedish boss.

London was ranked the top business city in Europe in the survey, a position that Cushman & Wakefield said it was consolidating. Paris was second, Frankfurt third. Stockholm was also beaten by cities including Manchester, Düsseldorf, Warsaw and Dublin.