Brexit not a threat to overseas investment in London, experts argue

Sian Bradley's picture
by Sian Bradley
Experts argue there is still appetite for investment in London

Overseas buyers will continue to invest in London companies despite Brexit worries, new research suggests.

Real estate firm CBRE revealed its office property data, where industry experts insisted Brexit will not have a “material impact” on future decisions to spend here.

The data shows that foreign investors from Germany, the US, Middle East and APAc spent a total of £144.3bn on opening London offices over the past two decades.

Germany was the main investor between 1999 and 2003, whilst America accounted for 13% of deals in 2004 to 2008. The Middle East dominated the field between 2009 and 2013, then APAC took over between 2014 and 2018, investing 28% of the total. 

Since 1999, the level of overseas investment into central London has increased steadily. And experts argue that England’s capital will still be attractive post-Brexit. 

CBRE’s James Beckham said: “Brexit isn’t likely to have a material impact on the appetite to invest in Europe’s only truly global gateway city.”

Alisa Zotimova, boss of AZ Real Estate, said: “This year will prove that London’s fundamentals such as legal stability, cultural diversity and being a English-speaking business hub are too strong to be beaten for too long.”

Finally, Julian Sandbach of JLL added that the capital’s commercial properties are still viewed as a “secure investment” and as offering "a relatively attractive yield in a low interest environment".

CBRE data: 


Last 20 years   Dominant overseas geography   Overseas spend

1999-2003       Germany  9%                              £11.6bn
2004-2008       US  13%                                      £34.2bn
2009-2013       Middle East 13%                         £42.0bn
2014-2018 (Q3) APAC  28%                                £56.5bn
TOTAL                                                                     £144.3bn