Five European financial hubs that run the world

By Andrew Harbison, CA Today

3 February 2017

Our list of five European locations which attract global benchmarks in financial services and technology. 

1. Dublin

Not to be outdone by some of its bigger city rivals, Dublin has proven itself to be an attractive location for global businesses, financial institutions, and tech start-ups to set up shop.

The Irish Financial Services Centre was established in 1987 and is home to Zurich Bank, Investec, Deloitte, PwC and KPMG Ireland.


The city also has a thriving ICT and digital culture which has attracted companies like Google, Facebook, and Twitter to the affectionately named ‘Silicon Docks’ area near the Grand Canal.  

The Smart Dublin initiative was set by the four Dublin local authorities and smart technology providers, with the goal of turning the capital into Europe’s leading smart city.


2. London

The City has long been revered as a bright beacon of finance, tech investment and innovative start-ups.

According to figures released by London & Partners, London remains a leading hub for tech investment, attracting significantly more money than any other major European city last year.


In total, more than £6.7 billion was invested in UK tech firms in 2016, with the City bringing in a third of the overall investment.

Some of the world’s leading tech giants continue to invest in London, with Google putting forward a £1 billion investment plan for a new headquarters in King’s Cross, Facebook announcing an additional 500 jobs for London and Apple revealing its plans for new headquarters in Battersea.

Source: London & Partners

3. Amsterdam

Boasting myriad cobbled streets, a snaking network of canals and architectural treasures, Amsterdam may not initially stand out as a global financial hub.

However, the wealth of culture in the city is matched by a long history of financial prowess.  


The Amsterdam Stock Exchange, currently managed by Euronext Amsterdam, and located in the centre of the city was established in 1602.

The city is also home to around 50 international banking chains including RBS, Citibank and Deutsche Bank. More than 20 major insurance companies have also rooted themselves in the city, which is one of the largest trading centres for derivatives in the world.

Source: I amsterdam

4. Frankfurt

Home to the European Central Bank (ECNB) and one of the largest airports in Europe, Frankfurt is a heavy hitter in the financial services and business world.


The city also hosts home-grown institutions Commerzbank and  Bundesbank along with the Börse Frankfurt (Frankfurt Stock Exchange).

Recently, the city has turned its gaze to the FinTech landscape, with the Deutsche Börse a FinTech hub in the main area of the city. The hub provides FinTech start-ups with office space and meeting rooms to help them develop their ideas and products.

Source: Guide-Frankfurt, Venture Network

5. Luxembourg  

With a population of around 500,000 it may come as a surprise that Luxembourg is the second largest investment fund centre in the world after the US.

The agency for the development of the financial centre says that the country’s 'legal framework, combined with Luxembourg’s openness to the world, has attracted banks, insurance companies, investment fund promoters and specialist service providers from all over the world.’


It also benefits from wealthy neighbours, as it nestles between Germany and Belgium, making Luxembourg an attractive location for financial professionals.

Source: Luxembourg for Finance


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