Greater Manchester has been included on the final shortlist of cities and regions to house the new Channel 4 National HQ as part of its 4 All the UK strategy.
Birmingham, Leeds and Greater Manchester have been selected after the completion of previous rounds in the pitch process launched by Chief Executive, Alex Mahon in April. Cities and regions were asked to provide written submissions outlining the strengths of the city or region and how it could meet Channel 4’s vision for the National HQ or Creative Hub – as set out as part of the pitch entry guidelines.
Greater Manchester was one of seven cities originally shortlisted for consideration as a new Channel 4 national HQ or Creative Hub.
Bristol, Cardiff, Glasgow and Liverpool have been rejected as the location for their HQ following a visit to all seven cities by the Chief Executive, Alex Mahon along with Chief Commercial Officer Jonathan Allan and Chief Marketing and Communications Office, Dan Brooke.
There is also disappointment for the six cities which were originally shortlisted for a creative hub – Belfast, Brighton, Newcastle-Gateshead, Nottingham, Sheffield and Stoke-on-Trent. Birmingham, Greater Manchester or Leeds are also in the running for one of two creative hubs along with Bristol, Cardiff and Glasgow.
Channel 4’s Chief Commercial Officer, Jonathan Allan, who is leading the pitch process said the final locations will be selected in October 2018
Channel 4 announced its 4 All the UK plan in March 2018 – a strategy to ensure that Channel 4 serves the whole of the UK and the biggest change to the structure of the organisation in its 35-year history.
At the heart of the strategy is a major new commitment from Channel 4 to significantly increase its Nations & Regions content spend from its current quota of 35% to a new voluntary target of 50% by 2023.
This will result in a cumulative boost of over £250m in Channel 4’s Nations & Regions commissioning spend – which will benefit all parts of the UK. It reflects both external analysis and feedback from the industry that increasing spend would have the greatest impact on regional economies and jobs.
To support and catalyse this spend across the UK, Channel 4 will move to a multi-site operating model, establishing a new National HQ and two new smaller creative hubs in the Nations & Regions in 2019 – home to jobs from across the business including key creative decision makers.
When this strategy is fully implemented, 300 Channel 4 jobs will be based in the Nations and Regions and the intention is to grow this further over time.
Channel 4 Executive Board member and Chief Commercial Officer Jonathan Allan has lead executive responsibility, working closely with CEO Alex Mahon, for delivering the 4 All the UK strategy – including leading the pitch process for the new creative hub locations.