The amount of Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) secured in Hertfordshire has grown over the past year, creating hundreds of new jobs, according to new figures from the Department for International Trade.

Over the financial year of 2016/17, Hertfordshire has seen a 38% growth in the number of successful FDI projects compared to the previous year. Twenty two projects were secured across 3 key sectors including healthcare and medical, B2B software and computer services, and business and consumer services. The county has also secured 5 multi-regional FDI projects run across multiple LEP areas nationwide.

New investment and expansion projects made up a significant majority of the total inward investment, at 59% and 32% respectively, reaffirming Hertfordshire’s reputation as an attractive place for business.

Expansions include Costco in Watford, HTT in Hemel Hempstead and Heptares Therapeutics, now owned by Japanese firm Sosei, in Welwyn Garden City. Firms bringing new investment into the county include Tusk Therapeutics and the Gowan Group, with the former establishing an office at the Stevenage BioScience Catalyst and the latter at Rothamsted Research in Harpenden, both recipients of Growth Deal funding secured by Hertfordshire LEP.

Juli Jessen, CEO of the Gowan Group, said: "Rothamsted Centre for Research and Enterprise presents an exceptional opportunity for us to find a home that fits our 'muddy boots' culture and we are excited to be surrounded by innovators in agriculture."

This year’s inward investment to Hertfordshire has ensured that 480 new jobs have been created and a further 112 jobs safeguarded. On a national level, foreign businesses accounted for 2265 investment projects this financial year, securing 108,000 new or safeguarded jobs.

According to the Department for International Trade, the UK attracts the most inward investment in Europe, with technology, renewable energy, life sciences and creative industries all being sectors that have experienced an increase in the number of projects.

Paul Witcombe, Hertfordshire LEP Enterprise and Innovation manager, said: “We are very pleased with these figures which show that we are playing to our key strengths, particularly in relation to medical and agri-tech research with both Stevenage Bioscience Catalyst and Rothamsted Centre for Research and Enterprise welcoming new tenants."

Hertfordshire Growth Hub's Inward Investment manager Viv Starkiss works closely with the Department for International Trade to ensure that companies looking to re-locate or expand are aware of the opportunities Hertfordshire presents. Contact Viv here.

A full report on these figures will be published this Autumn. Further information on this year’s Foreign Direct Investment figures can be found on the Department for International Trade website.