Sickness absence is severely impacting UK business – yet take up of key protection benefits is low

Long-term sickness absence is a serious issue with over two-fifths (44%) of UK SMEs reporting at least one employee absent for four weeks or more in the last twelve months, according to research from leading employee benefits provider, Unum.

The majority of SME bosses also said that long-term sickness (absence over six months) of a key employee would have a significant (44%), or even critical (24%), impact on the future success of the business. More than half (55%) said they would do everything they could to aid a member of staff back to work after a period of illness.

Despite the business impact of long-term absence and the employer’s desire to help employees back to work, another recent study by Unum and the British Chamber of Commerce (BCC), found uptake of core protection benefits to be very low.

According to the Unum and BCC study, only 8% of UK businesses surveyed offered income protection, one of the core products to help businesses and their employees through sickness absence with financial assistance and rehabilitation support. 22% surveyed said they offered Life Insurance, just 9% offered Critical Illness Insurance, while 22% said that they provide nothing at all in the form of financial protection benefits.

Alongside financial protection and rehabilitation support, fast access to early clinical help can be invaluable to employers and their employees. With that in mind, Unum has launched a new easy to use app ‘[email protected]’ as part of its Group Income Protection product to give employees and their families fast access to remote GPs, second medical opinions, physiotherapy and mental health services.

Peter O’Donnell, Chief Executive Officer, Unum UK, said: Illness and long-term sickness absence can have a serious impact on individuals and their families as well as to businesses of all sizes and across every sector. At Unum, we want to help businesses of all sizes put in place the necessary services and products to enable them to manage this effectively.

“As evidenced in the recent Government consultation – ‘Health is everyone’s business’ – the government is also placing greater importance on the role of employers in keeping people in work. Good employers want to support employees when they are unwell as our research shows, and making our services more modern and helping them better understand how products like Group income protection can help, is an important place to start.”

About Unum

Unum is a leading employee benefits provider offering financial protection through the workplace including: Income Protection, Life insurance, Critical Illness, and Dental cover.

Our Income Protection customers have access to medical and vocational rehabilitation expertise designed to help people stay in work and return to work following illness and injury.

Unum LifeWorks, our Employee Assistance Programme, provides help and advice on a range of work/life issues.

Our Critical Illness customers can access our Cancer Support Service, providing personalised support for employees with a cancer diagnosis.

We are committed to workplace wellbeing for both employees and employers. We have a wide range of tools designed to help businesses create or enhance their employee wellbeing strategy, including our Mental Health Pathway and Wellbeing Calendar.

At the end of 2018, Unum protected 1.4 million people in the UK and paid claims of £314 million – representing in excess of £6 million a week in benefits to our customers – providing security and peace of mind to individuals and their families.

Our parent company, Unum Group, is a provider of employee benefits products and services in the United States, including group and individual disability insurance. Premium income for Unum Group and its subsidiaries totalled $9.0bn in the year ended 31 December 2018, with reported revenues for the group totalling $11.6bn and total assets of $61.9bn.

A.M Best has given all rated Unum Group companies an Excellent rating for Financial Strength, with a stable outlook.

For more information please visit http://www.unum.co.uk.

Unum Limited is authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority. Unum Dental is a trading name of Unum Limited. Registered in England 983768.

About the British Chambers of Commerce

The British Chambers of Commerce surveyed 1,000 business leaders online between 29 April and 16 May 2019. Around 91% of participants were SMEs.

The British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) sits at the heart of a powerful network of 53 Accredited Chambers of Commerce across the UK, representing thousands of businesses of all sizes and within all sectors. Our Global Business Network connects exporters with over 50 markets around the world. For more information, visit: www.britishchambers.org.uk

Helsinki, World’s First City as a Service Is Not Just a Joke – Attracts Over 6500 applications from +100 cities

Helsinki, World's First City as a Service Is Not Just a Joke – Attracts Over 6500 applications from +100 cities
Helsinki, World’s First City as a Service Is Not Just a Joke – Attracts Over 6500 applications from +100 cities

 Helsinki and some of Finland’s most renowned tech companies launched a talent attraction campaign in September branding Helsinki as the world’s first City as a Service (CaaS). The campaign reframed the value that Helsinki offers to its “users” (current citizens) and potential “demo users” (tech professionals looking to relocate) using familiar vocabulary and tone of voice for international tech professionals. The campaign received close to 7,000 applications of tech professionals interested to relocate to Helsinki.

Now Helsinki is bringing its potential tech professionals to visit the city. Tech talent from Tel Aviv to New York will experience their potential new hometown Helsinki and its work-life balance during one of the world’s largest startup events, Slush, on 19–22 November. The visit is hosted by City of Helsinki along with Supercell, Smartly, Slush, Relex, and MaaS Global (Whim). 

“Finding the best talent in the world is critical for us and other tech companies in Helsinki. It is a great place to live and work, with the best education system, best healthcare, opportunities to families, amazing international companies and happiest people in the world! It is easy to demonstrate that when we bring people here,” says Kristo Ovaska, CEO of Smartly.

Clever and engaging campaign noticed by the global tech community

The campaign turned city into a digital product of this decade and pitched Helsinki as a Service, highlighting its multiple perks: Helsinki’s 640,000 daily active users, key features such as free world-class education and healthcare. Helsinki’s bugs – darkness, snow and the flat skyline – were mentioned as carefully considered features. The city’s Mayor Jan Vapaavuori was recruited to act as the CEO of CaaS, encouraging potential demo users to apply for a free demo trip to Helsinki during Europe’s leading startup event Slush. 

The stunt was described as clever and engaging by Trendwatching and chosen as their Innovation of the Day. The results speak for themselves. In less than a month Helsinki received close to 7,000 applications from the wished target group of professionals in tech from software engineers, developers, AI researchers etc. 

“Helsinki has all it takes to make you feel like home but the problem was, not too many knew about its beautiful features. To make the world aware of what Helsinki has to offer, the city just needed a little repackaging.” says Alexander Pihlainen, CEO of brand company Bou behind the creative concept. 

Helsinki steps up efforts to attract international talent

This year the Finnish growth companies attracted the most venture capital investments to GDP in Europe, and hundreds of millions of euros in foreign capital have been invested in startups here. With a new approach to branding Helsinki, the city wants to improve the city’s image as a place to live. 

“Helsinki is located in one of the world’s most secure countries and inhabited by the world’s happiest people. The majority of foreign experts who have settled in Helsinki are satisfied with the quality of life here. The experience of a happy, good life is a combination of tangible – like housing, transportation, jobs and infrastructure – and intangible things. The intangibles – sense of trust and community, equality, closeness to nature – are essential values in building the quality of life”, says Jan Vapaavuori, Mayor of Helsinki.

Campaign site: www.myhelsinki.fi/caas

For more information, please contact:

Laura Aalto
CEO
Helsinki Marketing (Helsinki)
+358 40 507 9660
[email protected] 

Helsinki Marketing is a company owned by the City of Helsinki. It is responsible for operative city marketing and business partnerships for Helsinki. Helsinki Marketing interacts with local residents, visitors, decision-makers and experts. 

CE-approval (Class IIa) for Heart2Save’s arrhythmia analysis service

AiVoni Analysis Service by Heart2Save from Finland determines four different arrhythmias, allowing especially detection of atrial fibrillation. Early detection of arrhythmia significantly reduces the number of strokes caused by atrial fibrillation and thus saves lives and secures higher life quality. AiVoni Analysis Service is based on clinically validated algorithms and has now been certified as a medical device (CE 0537 / Class IIa). The service is available for ECG device providers through the industry-standard interface, Heart2Save is especially looking for new players in the consumer market, developing new innovative ECG solutions.

Atrial fibrillation is a heart arrhythmia, which causes symptoms for some, but is asymptomatic for others. This means the person in question is often completely unaware of suffering from atrial fibrillation. The most feared consequence of atrial fibrillation is a cerebral stroke. In fact, atrial fibrillation causes no less than 40 % of cerebral strokes. The lifetime risk of a stroke is about 20 %.    

AiVoni Analysis Service by Heart2Save has been certified as a medical device, which means it has gone through the same process as devices that are used in hospitals, ensuring product quality and patient safety. The Service’s clinically validated algorithms analyse the heart rhythm and send the response within seconds to the user. The service generates a diagnostic ECG report, which facilitates the initiation of a treatment path.   

The algorithms have been validated in clinical studies, which proved that AiVoni Analysis Service can detect atrial fibrillation with high sensitivity (96 %) and specificity (99 %). Moreover, it can detect ventricular extrasystoles, bradycardia and tachycardia with high accuracy. 

Heart2Save collaborates with Suunto, a leading sports watch provider, in developing the product for arrhythmia detection. Heart2Save is responsible for the analysis service, and Suunto produces the ECG sensor. Suunto’s Movesense medical-grade ECG sensor is now in the final phase of medical device approval.  

‘Congratulations for Heart2Save for medical approval. We will be there soon as well with the Movesense sensor and are looking forward to the success of Heart2Save’s product’, says Jussi Kaasinen, Director of Emerging Businesses, Suunto. 

To expand the possibilities for stroke prevention, Heart2Save is now looking for new partners for ECG device integration.

On Nov 21-22.2019, Heart2Save is attending Slush, the world’s leading startup event, presenting the AiVoni Analysis Service, and is looking forward to meeting potential investors and other stakeholders. On Friday 22.11 the company can be found in the startup area, booth E8.

For more information, please contact:   

Helena Jäntti  
CEO, Heart2Save  
+358 40 553 8438 | [email protected]   
 

ABOUT Heart2Save  

Heart2Save’s mission is to save lives and ensure high life quality by early detection of heart arrhythmias and prevention of cerebral strokes. The company has developed AiVoni Analysis Service that allows users to identify heart arrhythmia anywhere, anytime. The service is certified as a medical device (CE 0537 / Class IIa). Heart2Save’s team consists of doctors, top medical signal processing PhD’s supported by medical device R&D, quality and regulatory professionals. The investor team adds expertise from business and financing perspectives. www.heart2save.com

Could this be the SME election? Small businesses employ 16million – over a third of the electorate

SME experts – IW Capital and the UKBAA – discuss the importance of SME success to the next Government

Today will see the three main party leaders set out their plans to secure the support of the UK’s business leaders at the CBI conference. Boris Johnson is set to make the case for getting Brexit done, while Jo Swinson is to claim that the Lib Dems are the “natural party of business”. Labour is to focus on apprenticeships and training for the business community.

When setting out their stall in business policy, one area that is set to have a huge impact is the support promised for small and medium enterprises across the UK. The SME community employs 16.6million of the roughly 45million eligible voters in the UK and contributes £2.2trillion (52%) to the economy. If the next Government can make it clear that they are the party to help this sector of business to grow and thrive they could see significant support from one of the biggest sections of voters to exist in the UK.

Luke Davis – CEO of SME investment house IW Capital says:

“The importance of the SME sector is hard to overstate, and in the context of the upcoming election will be hugely important to the future economy. With over a third of the electorate employed by small businesses this could really be a swing vote of society – if this section of the workforce feels more confident in their job security and business growth with one party, it will almost undoubtedly affect voting decisions.

“For SMEs to feel confident in their capacity to grow, employ more people and expand they need to trust that the incoming Government is going to look after them and deliver security. The range of innovative and agile firms in the space currently is reflective of the entrepreneurial spirit of the UK which if fostered correctly could kick-start the wider economy into a period of growth.”

Jenny Tooth, CEO of the UK Business Angels Association, has commented:

“Not only is it the employees of SMEs that are keeping a keen eye on this election, but also the investors involved within the SME arena. With Britain’s impending exit from the European Union, the loss of the Jeremie fund and Horizon 2020 are bound to leave regional SMEs proactively seeking private investment more fervently. However, the mindset of investors could change post-Brexit. Investors will be looking for greater longevity when assessing the potential of a business, and will now look to how scalable businesses are in terms of their international reach. The forthcoming election and the pledges that the parties sell to businesses needs to reassure investors that the environment they delve into is a sustainable one.”

Brexit Backdoor Bonanza

The grim truth about Brexit deal III worked out between the current UK government and the EU this Autumn is that in attempting to remove the Irish backstop there will be established a huge facility for smuggling goods into, and through, the European Union – partially or totally tariff free.

FedEE

The new Protocol has found a form of words that both allows Northern Ireland to remain in the UK, but also have an open border with the Irish Republic. To ostensibly avoid smuggling, Article 5 sets out a process whereby types of goods can be identified as being at “risk of subsequently being moved into the [European] Union”. But there will also be a general exclusion clause if goods are not processed in Northern Ireland – although they can be relabelled.

The cross references and double negatives in the Protocol are clearly designed to confuse the reader, but the essence of this replacement for the former “backstop” is that with a long open border there will, in practice, be virtually no barrier to “badge engineering” and the smuggling of goods into the EU (ie: the South) having imported goods to the North via any new trade agreement, or free trade concession the UK decides to introduce.

Of course, there will also be the option of exporting via Northern Ireland (and a hop across the border) goods that have been made in Great Britain, to be reshipped from Dublin to non-EU countries with which the EU has tariff-free trade and the UK does not. 

Such a backdoor trade will, no doubt, help revive the established mafia in the province – the IRA. This could, in turn, undermine legitimate trade within the EU and generate a thriving grey economy to the cost of many multinationals operating legitimately there.

According to Robin Chater, Secretary-General of the Federation of International Employers (FedEE), “The fact that no watertight agreement can be reached on a Brexit deal is because a deep incompetence permeates the UK political system. It is equally a sad fact that the British people are blinded to the tragic mistake that is Brexit by their preoccupation with a hatred for eastern European nationals – who have contributed so much to the UK economy over the last 15 years. Such incompetence and xenophobia makes me deeply ashamed to be British.

For further information please contact Eustace Fernsby at the FedEE Press Office on [email protected] and 0044 203 608 4412.

What is FedEE?

The Federation of International Employers (FedEE) is a leading corporate membership organisation for multinational companies. It was founded in 1998, with financial assistance from the European Commission. Today it is an independent body with corporate members all around the globe. 

The Dutch Fund for Climate and Development open for business

The Hague, November 15, 2019 – The Dutch Fund for Climate and Development (DFCD) has officially been launched in the presence of government officials, NGOs, investors, politicians and other interested parties. In May of this year, the DFCD was awarded to the consortium of Dutch development bank FMO, SNV Netherlands Development Organisation (SNV), World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF-NL) and Climate Fund Managers (CFM). “Today’s launch means that the DFCD is officially open for business,” said Linda Broekhuizen, Chief Investment Officer at FMO. “The consortium is keen to connect with innovative entrepreneurs with climate-related businesses and with private investors keen to mobilize much-needed funding from the private sector to join us in our mission to create a more climate-resilient world.”

Climate change is one of the biggest challenges we face today. It is already affecting people and nature across the globe, with developing countries being most impacted. “The poorest communities are the most vulnerable to climate change. Poor farmers and others at the bottom of the pyramid suffer and lose their livelihoods even with small changes in rainfall patterns or temperature”, as Meike van Ginneken, Chief Executive Officer at SNV explained.

There is an urgent need for investment to enable vulnerable communities and ecosystems to adapt to climate change. Carola van Rijnsoever, Director of Inclusive Green Growth, and Ambassador for Sustainable Development, Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs, said: „The challenge we face to help communities adapt to and mitigate the effects of climate change is enormous, and the case for action is incredibly clear. We cannot do this with governments alone. We need all stakeholders to be strong enough to confront this challenge. The set-up of this consortium in which finance and NGOs come together, is unique and uniquely positioned to do this.“ The government of The Netherlands has committed to addressing this need through the DFCD, making EUR 160 million available in the period 2019-2022 for climate adaptation and mitigation, of which at least 50% is earmarked for climate adaptation projects.

DFCD is a direct response to the increasing demand for climate adaptation projects that have to date suffered from a lack of funding compared with mitigation efforts. Linda Broekhuizen adds: “In 2018, USD 612 billion was invested in climate mitigation which is important and much needed. In contrast however, only 5%, USD 30 billion, was invested in adaptation. Adaptation may have to be USD 180 billion a year if the 2030 goal is to reach the USD 1.7 trillion as required according to the most recent report of the Global Commission on Adaptation.”

To help bridge this funding gap the DFCD aims to mobilize upwards of EUR 500 million from private sector investors. Andrew Johnstone, Chief Executive Officer of Climate Fund Managers adds: “The opportunities are there. Take water for example: 80% of the world’s wastewater enters rivers and oceans untreated and by 2025, half of the world’s population will be living in water stressed areas. Neither the private nor the public sector is doing enough, but together the investment potential is enormous, as is the impact to be delivered.”

This partnership of NGOs and financiers seeks to develop and finance sustainable private sector solutions to enhance resilience to the effects of climate change. These projects will boost the health of freshwater, forest, agricultural and ocean ecosystems, and improve water management.

“The consortium takes a landscape approach through investing in projects which are planned in an inclusive manner, and build on a solid understanding of the landscape, ecosystems and communities. In this way these projects will contribute to healthier ecosystems,” said Kirsten Schuijt, Chief Executive Officer of WWF-NL. “New and incredibly exciting in this consortium is that there is early-stage funding available to convert adaptation opportunities into bankable projects.” 

WWF and SNV take on the key role of developing climate-relevant projects from an early-stage idea to a bankable business case. Climate Fund Managers and FMO provide investment capital, delivering projects to full operations. This combination of early-stage involvement with full life-cycle funding will ensure lasting, long-term impact that contributes to the Paris Agreement and the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Interested parties can contact the DFCD through: www.thedfcd.com.

The Dutch Fund for Climate and Development open for business
In picture from left to right the DFCD partners at the official launch event in The Hague: Andrew Johnstone, CEO of Climate Fund Managers, Kirsten Schuijt, CEO of WWF-NL, Linda Broekhuizen, CIO of FMO, Albert Bokkestijn, project manger DFCD at SNV, Carola van Rijnsoever, Director of Inclusive Green Growth, and Ambassador for Sustainable Development, Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

In picture from left to right the DFCD partners at the official launch event in The Hague: Andrew Johnstone, CEO of Climate Fund Managers, Kirsten Schuijt, CEO of WWF-NL, Linda Broekhuizen, CIO of FMO, Albert Bokkestijn, project manger DFCD at SNV, Carola van Rijnsoever, Director Inclusive Green Growth, and Ambassador Sustainable Development, Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

NDB President reports to BRICS leaders at 11th Summit in Brasilia, Brazil

NDB President reports to BRICS leaders at 11th Summit in Brasilia, Brazil

On November 14, 2019, Mr. K.V. Kamath, President of the New Development Bank reported to the Leaders of Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa during the 11th BRICS Summit in Brasilia, Brazil.

“Thus far, the NDB has approved 46 projects for USD 12.8 billion in our member countries. By the end of this year, we expect the approvals to reach about USD 15 billion. In 2020, we are targeting approvals of USD 8-10 billion,” said Mr. K.V. Kamath.

“We are measuring the impact of our work through our contributions to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals that our members have committed to. We are also supporting projects that address some of the core developmental needs in our member countries, as articulated in their development agendas,” said the NDB President.

NDB President reports to BRICS leaders at 11th Summit in Brasilia, Brazil

Mr. K.V. Kamath highlighted operations of the Bank in its member countries:

  • In Brazil, the NDB is supporting improved physical connectivity of remote areas to logistical hubs while simultaneously laying the infrastructure for enhanced digital connectivity.
  • In Russia, in addition to financing infrastructure that will conserve and improve accessibility to historic and cultural centers, the Bank is moving into new areas such as bringing digital technologies to the judicial system, expanding higher education and supporting railway sector.
  • In India, the NDB is investing in improving connectivity of rural areas to markets and opportunities, as well as in better management of water resources.
  • In China, the Bank is contributing to the rehabilitation and restoration of environmental assets that were adversely impacted during the phases of rapid growth and lending for innovative green technologies.
  • In South Africa, the NDB is assisting energy and water projects, two areas that are at the heart of the country’s economic and social challenges.

“NDB has thus far received USD 5.6 billion in capital, including advance payments of the fifth instalment by China and Russia. We expect to receive the balance USD 900 million of the fifth instalment from our other three members by January 2020,” stated the NDB President.

“The Bank’s Africa Regional Center in Johannesburg has proved that on-the-ground presence makes a big difference to our work. Our Brazil office is already staffed and ready to open and we await completion of necessary formalities. Preparations for our office in Moscow are at an advanced stage and we will open this office early next year. We will follow that up with our Delhi office in the first half of 2020,” added Mr. K.V. Kamath.

“Going forward, the Bank is capable of sustaining between USD 8-10 billion of annual lending. With the initial USD 10 billion of capital that has been provided to it by the founding members, by 2027, the Bank can achieve a total asset book of about USD 50 billion.”

“As and when the decision is taken to admit new members to the Bank, and capital from these new members is received, the Bank can grow further. Under this scenario, it can achieve a total asset book of about USD 90 billion by 2027,” projected the NDB President.

Background Information

The NDB was established by Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa to mobilize resources for infrastructure and sustainable development projects in BRICS and other emerging economies and developing countries, complementing the existing efforts of multilateral and regional financial institutions for global growth and development. To fulfill its purpose, the NDB will support public or private projects through loans, guarantees, equity participation and other financial instruments. According to the NDB’s General Strategy, sustainable infrastructure development is at the core of the Bank’s operational strategy for 2017-2021. The NDB received AA+ long-term issuer credit ratings from S&P and Fitch and AAA foreign currency long-term issuer rating from Japan Credit Rating Agency (JCR).

Read the full text of the President’s Report on the NDB website: https://www.ndb.int/president_desk/report-of-the-president-2019/ 

Extraordinary Opportunity to Experience the World’s 6G Hotspot Followed by the World’s First Open 5G Cyber Security Hackathon in Oulu, Finland

Hosted by National Cyber Security Centre Finland NCSC-FI / Finnish Transport and Communications Agency Traficom

We invite you to join us at the opening of the world’s first Open 5G Cyber Security Hackathon at the global 6G and 5G hotspot – Oulu, Finland on the 29th of November. This ground-breaking hackathon brings together nearly 100 best hackers from 20 different countries as they complete different challenges set by Ericsson, Nokia and Oulu University.

Before the opening event, you get the unparalleled chance to explore Oulu – the home to research and development of top-tier cybersecurity on a
global scale. 6G is a flagship programme at Oulu University and about 60% of the world’s mobile phone traffic utilizes network technologies that were developed in Oulu. During this trip, you have the unique opportunity to learn about the latest 6G developments, get to know to the one of a kind ICT ecosystem in Oulu and visit some of the leading cyber security companies in the city, such as Bittium, F-Secure, Nokia 5G Factory and Tosibox. You´ll also have the opportunity to meet the head of Ericsson 5G Cyber Security.

Later, at the hackathon opening event, experts and decision-makers in 5G and cybersecurity join together to discuss the future of 5G and 6G as well as its security as the world enters a new digital decade. In addition, the hackathon’s challenges will be revealed.

This event will be followed by Leading Edge 5G Forum on February 13, 2020 in Helsinki, Finland that gathers the leading experts and decision-makers from around the world to single forum. The event´s speaker list includes major technology vendors, EU cyber security authorities, top decision makers and representatives from some of the biggest operators around the world, topped with leading professionals and evangelists in the field of 5G cyber security.

Please sign up by November 25, 2019. Registrations are handled by PR Agency Miltton, [email protected]

WeWork? More like WePull: New flexible co-working is fuelling office romances

The melting pot of young creative talent is having surprising effects on co-worker’s love lives

It used to be down to catching the eye of your suitor at the water cooler, but now with the influx of co-working super offices with an average of 700 members per building, office romances are hitting record levels.

Daily networking opportunities, huge open plan co-working areas and free beer are some of the features that are helping to turn WeWork into “WePull”.

“If you fill a building with young, ambitious people, then fuel them with free beer, topped off with evening networking – it’s going to bring people together and I guess that’s the point!”, says Jonathan Ratcliffe from Offices.co.uk

“We’ve been told that the large buildings are very busy with new relationships, and many are working out. People seem to have a common goal, a reason to chat and the environment is very productive to new relationships – both business and personal”, Ratcliffe adds.

The average amount of co-workers per WeWork location is nearly 700 – with a steady turnover and influx of new members every day, those looking for new romance can sit back and take their pick.

Even if it doesn’t work out, flexible workspace means just that – move to the next.

But there are pitfalls for those working for large organisations though – breeching company policy and embarrassing public arguments could have serious effects for those in long term employment.

According to a survey by Vault.com industries with the highest “fling per head” were:

  • Retail – 62%
  • Technology – 60%
  • Human Resources – 57%
  • Insurance – 54%
  • Finance – 49%

The survey also found that 51% had an office romance at some point, and 20% were in a relationship with a co-worker at that very time.

“It’s not surprising that the industries that typically use co-working workspaces are those who enjoy the most work flings”, concludes Jonathan Ratcliffe from Offices.co.uk

Survey data taken from Vault.com: https://www.vault.com/blogs/workplace-issues/2015-office-romance-survey-results

Spokesperson Jonathan Ratcliffe from Offices.co.uk is available for comment on 020 3151 3360 or by email [email protected]

Offices.co.uk is a National Provider of Serviced Offices and Flexible Workspaces.

Website: https://www.offices.co.uk

Twitter: https://twitter.com/offices_co_uk

What Is Investment Banking? (And the Top Investment Banks Out There)

Investment banking plays a key role in global economics. For instance, as of July 2019, JP Morgan constituted 9.0% of the global investment banking revenue. However, for the majority of us, investment banking is a mystery.

By learning about investment banking today, you’ll be ready to make informed choices if you want to improve your financial situation through IPO investing.

Read on as we answer the question: “What is investment banking?” 

What is Investment Banking? 

The duties of investment banks are completely different than traditional banking. While the traditional banks we’re used to visiting take in deposits from consumers and businesses and lend out money, investment banks sell securities. They also help finance large projects that traditional banking won’t touch due to the high risks involved.

Robert Johnson, Professor of finance at Heider College of Business, Brighton University, puts it simply. “Investment banking is a method of controlling the flow of money.” With the huge amounts of money at stake, investment banks have a key role in American economics. 

The projects they finance include: 

Large Financial Projects

Projects such as constructing infrastructure need large amounts of upfront cash. Investment banks are able to accumulate this cash by selling securities to investors. 

Company Sales

Instead of acquiring loans to gain capital, entrepreneurs who want to expand their companies sell portions of their companies to the public, or an initial public offering (IPO). Investment bankers are integral to this process, and it’s one of their most important functions. They find investors looking to buy and companies looking to sell.

Initial public offerings are risky investments – there’s no guarantee that they’ll increase in value, though some IPOs are wildly successful. However, if you’re ready to invest in an IPO, you can do so by opening a brokerage account. 

Typically, the IPO price is fixed for a limited group of investors who fit the eligibility requirements. For most investors, the price of the IPO will be higher once it begins officially trading. 

According to the investment bank UBS, out of 7,000 companies between 1975 and 2011, 60% had negative total returns after five years of public trading. Do your research, buy conservatively, and keep a balanced portfolio to mitigate your risks!

Mergers and Acquisitions

Another way that companies can expand is through mergers and acquisitions. Investment bankers will help companies buy another, which can be more cost-effective than trying to compete. 

Despite the risks, buying companies still has a lot of benefits. A company may want access to international markets through a company that’s already established in another region. A larger company may be interested in a smaller company’s technology. They may also want to integrate vertically, such as buying a supplier of materials they need. 

Asset Management and Brokerage Services

Investment bankers help clients manage their money and generate returns. They do this by choosing individual stocks or putting their money into mutual funds. 

The Top Investment Banks

These top investment banks were able to maintain and grow their market positions throughout volatile years. In terms of investment revenue, the top investment banks include: 

1. Goldman Sachs

Headquartered at 200 West Street, New York City, Goldman Sachs operates branches throughout the world in all major financial centres. In 2018, its investment banking revenue was $7.86 billion. In 2019, they had a market capitalization of $78 billion. 

2. JP Morgan

JP Morgan is the second largest investment bank in the world. In 2018, it reported $7 billion in revenue. It’s also one of the oldest financial institutions in the world with a history that goes back to 1799.

3. Bank of America

In 2019, Bank of America rebranded its investment arm to Bank of America Securities. In 2018, it’s investment banking revenue was $5.3 billion. 

4. Morgan Stanley

Morgan Stanley is based in New York with branches in 40 different countries. In 2018, it’s totally investment banking revenues were $6.1 billion. 

5. Citigroup

Also located in New York, Citigroup Inc. had reported total revenue of $72.9 billion in 2018. It’s one of the big four banks in the United States and the third-largest bank in the world. 

6. Barclays 

Barclays Investment Bank, the investment arm of Barclays, is headquartered in London and has branches in 30 different countries. Its global investment banking fee share is approximately 4.2%. 

7. Credit Suisse

In 2018, Credit Suisse reported a net income of $1.8 billion, attributable to shareholders in the United States. Based in Zurich and established in 1856, it has branches in 50 countries. 

8. Deutsche Bank

This is the leading financial institution in Germany and one of the largest investment banks in Europe. It has about $2.5 billion in investment banking revenue and a market capitalization of $15 billion in 2019. It has branches in 60 other countries.

9. Wells Fargo

Wells Fargo offers banking and investment services in 40 countries. As of 2018, it’s generated investment banking fees are $1.8 billion.

10. Jefferies Financial Group

This full-service investment bank founded in 1962 is based in New York with regional offices in London and Hong Kong. It also has offices in 30 cities throughout America, Europe, and Asia. In 2018 its investment banking revenues were $1.9 billion.

Demystifying Investment Banking

If you’ve ever asked yourself what is investment banking, you should now understand the basic premise. Investment banking is all about the flow of large amounts of money from one institution to another, and through research, analysis, and recommendations, investment bankers try to find the best deals for their clients. 

Want to read more about the state of investment banking today in the global economy? Keep reading our banking section for more informative articles.