Our bags are packed and we’re ready to go. Why? Because it’s business as usual here at SmithsonHill. We’re setting off for MIPIM, the world’s leading property market trade fair in Cannes. Here’s a quick update of  how we will be flying the Cambridge flag  

MIPIM is the world’s premier real estate event. It gathers the most influential players from all sectors of the international property industry for four days of networking, learning and transaction through premium events, conferences and dedicated exhibition space. We will be sharing space with London Stansted Cambridge Consortium (LSCC). LSCC is a strategic partnership of public and private organisations. It aims to seek economic growth, higher employment rates and to provide places for people and business without compromising the character of our geographical corridor. We will be supporting them in flying the flag for Cambridge. 

Through supporting LSCC in showcasing Cambridge’s strengths as a European HQ location and our expertise in developing collaborative environments to support and enhance Cambridge’s global reputation for innovation, our vision of a world changing AgriTech facility in Cambridge will be kept alive, whilst we continue to progress our plans.  

So, why is Cambridge an ideal location for European HQs? 

A recent study predicts that Cambridge will have the fastest growing economy of all Britain’s cities  in 2018. The city was also recognised in the UK Government’s recent Industrial Strategy as a job  creation hotspot. Neither news item came as a surprise to us. Our planned Cambridge AgriTech facility, ARC, offers a powerful European HQ opportunity to start-ups and global corporations involved in agriculture, technology and life sciences. Cambridge’s agricultural tradition, together with its rich history of attracting the best brains and creating collaborative workplaces from which to innovate, makes it the ideal location for the latest emerging tech sector: AgriTech. 

What’s all the fuss about collaborative environments and why is Cambridge so good at collaboration? 

The importance of collaboration in today’s workplace is well recognised. Project management techniques and technology that enables collaboration is now standard. Creating environments that enable collaboration though, has perhaps been less well publicised. It’s not too difficult to understand. Steve Jobs got it. According to his biographer, Jobs knew how impromptu conversations and other casual and collaborative gatherings nurture creativity and spark innovation.  

Creating environments that foster such creativity and innovation works and Cambridge is really good at it. Just consider the innovations and global success stories that have emerged from Cambridge Science Park, The Wellcome Institute and the other clusters of business parks in our region. Indeed, when the Cambridge Phenomenon explored the factors behind Cambridge’s economic success in relation to globally significant discoveries and innovations, it established such collaborative environments as vital. As Charles Cotton, the founder of Cambridge Phenomenon says:

“This continually evolving community is like a perpetual motion engine attracting fresh, bright people inspired to do things differently.” 

The subject of collaboration across the wider region is the topic of one of the key note presentations at MIPIM this year, on Thursday at 10.00am, should you be there. 

London and its neighbours: working together to create better growth 

Our managing director, Emma Fletcher, will be sitting on the panel at this keynote, entitled ‘London and its neighbours: working together to create better growth.’  Topics that will be explored include: 

  • How can places along UK’s innovation corridor, which links London to Cambridge, collaborate to achieve more inclusive growth, improved productivity and quicker delivery for the benefit of the whole of the UK? 
  • The shared challenges of housing delivery and providing an infrastructure for growth 
  • Whether London could do more to work with its neighbours, develop a shared vision for the future and understanding of the challenges they face  

We’ll report in as soon as we’re back, so watch this space …