Business Environment in Central Cardiff

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Skills & Academia


Your potential workforce in Cardiff Enterprise Zone is large and skilled.

1.4 million people live within 30 minutes’ commute – and that’s set to grow with the imminent electrification of the urban rail network and over 40,000 new homes planned over the next ten years in Cardiff Council’s Local Development Plan.

Half of Wales’ 140,000 skilled financial and professional services workers are based in the Cardiff region, while 30% of the city’s entire workforce is qualified at least to degree level.

You can expect our financial support with skills development as well as a growing talent pool: a new Further Education campus at the heart of the Zone delivers commercial and professional services courses and is also working with businesses here to create bespoke training programmes.

You can make use of our established, strong links with academics and students at Cardiff’s three universities. Cardiff University is a Russell Group University and produces more Financial & Professional Services graduates than any other major city in the UK. It, Cardiff Metropolitan University and the University of South Wales have between them three business schools, three law schools and 70,000 students.

The capital’s location means the 50,000–strong student populations of Bath, Bristol and Swansea are also accessible.

Finally, your investment in people here pays off in retention: graduates tend to stay and our workforce is particularly loyal.



Central Cardiff Enterprise Zone is focused on the growth of the business sector, including Financial & Professional Services and other office-based business operations.

Research states we're the preferred location for contact and shared service centres in the UK and we have a growing reputation in outsourced HR, legal and other corporate services.

Currently, banks and building societies dominate the financial services sector here, while insurance and pension companies represent an important sub-sector.

The remainder work in operation and supervision enterprises including:

  • insurance brokers
  • independent financial advisors
  • fund managers
  • asset managers
  • stockbrokers
  • actuaries, loss adjustors; risk managers
  • exchanges
  • wealth managers

As the UK banking industry is restructured, there are big opportunities in Cardiff for:

  • insurance
  • asset management
  • funds management
  • pensions

Cardiff also leads the way as an advanced ICT business location.

The city is home to an increasingly competitive telecoms market: BT has a fully enabled presence in the city, and most of the business community has the choice of cable, while we have a growing cluster of independent telecoms providers offering high-speed fibre and wireless solutions.

Who’s already here?

two men

Admiral Insurance has its headquarters in the Zone and Legal & General’s largest UK office is here.

As you stroll through the capital you’ll see familiar names including the AA, Atradius, British Gas, Deloitte, Eversheds, Hugh James, ING Direct, Lloyds TSB, PricewaterhouseCoopers, Principality, Zurich and more.

Quality of life

Cardiff is the number 2 city in the UK for employees’ quality of life¹ - one of the reasons we have a particularly loyal workforce and that graduates tend to stay once they get a job here.

The city regularly features in the UK and Europe’s best cities to live in surveys², is a UK top five retail location³, with its impressive St David’s shopping centre and Edwardian and Victorian arcades.

It is a ‘city of parks’, with more green space per person than any other core UK city. With world class venues such as the Principality Stadium and the Millennium Centre, Cardiff hosts major events, from international sport such as Ashes test cricket, FA Cup Finals and international rugby World Cups to international arts festivals.

Cardiff has been described as the ‘epitome of cool’ by the Lonely Planet travel guide, with the city centre and the bay combining to offer a sophisticated urban lifestyle with mountains, coast and countryside all on the doorstep.

Best of all, this is underpinned by an affordable cost of living, with excellent state and private schools and a wide variety of quality housing that makes Cardiff one of Europe’s most liveable cities.

¹ source: Cushman and Wakefield

² eg, UK’s best city to live in (Moneysupermarket survey 2014); top UK city for quality of life, European Commission’s 2013 Urban Audit

³ Source: Going Shopping 2013: the definitive guide to shopping centres

Visit each Zone to find out more: