Interview with Jacek Jaśkowiak and Katja Lõžina
Poznań is one of the most rapidly developing cities in the CEE region, an important academic and scientific center, strongly associated with business, known for supporting investors. The capital of Wielkopolska is open for new investments from BPO/SSC sector, the city is already one of the most important centers of business services in Poland.
What Poznań can offer to investors? How important is the modern business services sector here? Can we talk about some specific specialties of business services that are particularly well-suited to Poznań? Read the interview with Jacek Jaśkowiak, Mayor of Poznań and Katja Lõžina, Investor Relations Department Director at Poznań City Hall.


Poznań has always been associated with business development, known for its friendly atmosphere and support given to investors. What is Poznań’s secret and what does the city offer investors?

Mayor of the City of Poznań, Jacek Jaśkowiak: Poznań’s strength lies in its residents. Involvement and responsibility for the entrusted tasks, which are the defining traits of Poznań’s residents, are both conducive to every business. Poznań is an academic city with over 112,000 students. Every year, nearly 30,000 graduates who speak foreign languages and constitute a dream talent pool for employers from the business services sector enter the labour market. The quality of life and support from the City are also important for investors. In Poznań, it is offered by the Investor Relations Department, which helps companies at every stage of a particular investment's development. To sum up, Poznań is a friendly city in terms of both work and living. This is where its success lies.


Which industries are the most willing to invest in Poznań?

Mayor of the City of Poznań, Jacek Jaśkowiak: The largest foreign capital has been invested in industrial production, mainly in the automotive, food and pharmaceutical industries, which we can owe to the largest global investors in Poznań: Volkswagen, Bridgestone, GSK, Nivea, and Unilever. Poznań is also eagerly chosen by companies specializing in IT. Examples of such companies in recent years include TomTom, Sonalake, Nordcloud. To Poznań, the modern business services sector constitutes another important industry, which is why we are happy to host the 9th ABSL Conference in Poznań.


How important is the modern business services sector for the City?

Head of Investor Relations Department of the City of Poznań, Katja Lõžina: The modern business services sector in Poznań already employs over 16 thousand people, and this number is growing at an impressive rate of 18% annually. The most important thing for the City of Poznań is that we attract companies which offer attractive jobs for people with higher education and foreign language skills. The fact that Poznań creates favourable conditions for investment in the modern services sector is proved by the development of local investors. Such global brands as Franklin Templeton Investment, IKEA, Rockwool, or McKinsey & Company all realize their success stories here.

Is it possible to speak about any specific specialisations of business services that are feeling particularly at home in Poznań?

Head of Investor Relations Department of the City of Poznań, Katja Lõžina: In Poznań we observe a trend of attracting companies operating in IT technologies. Companies specialising in F&A services, such as Franklin Templeton and Rockwool, have also been successful. This is greatly influenced by Poznań's universities, which educate IT and business specialists. Poznań offers excellent quality of education also in the linguistic faculties. What is particularly important in the case of Poznań, modern service centres located in our city perform advanced processes and constantly take over new ones.


What actions does the City take to attract investors from this sector?

Head of Investor Relations Department of the City of Poznań, Katja Lõžina: As an Investor Relations Department, we offer support to investors based on the most convenient "one-stop-shop" principle. A representative of a company looking for a location for their centre is assigned a dedicated project manager. This person guides them through the entire process of starting the investment, i.e. organises meetings with representatives of universities, consulting agencies, career offices or representatives of other companies operating in the same modern services industry, helps in selecting a convenient location, etc. As a City we also offer assistance in the area of employer branding. We have launched an internship program for students who start their internship at a company in Poznań.

What are the City's upcoming plans in terms of attracting investors? Can we tell what companies we have a chance of welcoming to Poznań in the near future?

Head of Investor Relations Department of the City of Poznań, Katja Lõžina: In Poznań, at the moment we are handling about 10 requests from investors from the modern services sector, however, we cannot disclose their names or even their profiles. Investor acquisition should be seen in two ways, and this is how we operate in Poznań. First of all, we try to create favourable conditions for conducting business. What is becoming increasingly important to companies looking for a new location is the quality of life in the city, which is why we focus on revitalization and creating a friendly space for residents. Examples of such places include e.g. the Wartostrada, which is a walking and cycling path that leads along the Warta river, or municipal beaches. We also cooperate with universities and their career offices. Thanks to these activities, Poznań is becoming a friendly place to live for young people, who constitute a talent pool for the modern services sector. Besides, we are present at events aimed at the modern services sector, we promote the potential of Poznań during events held in Poland and abroad.