EDINBURGH, Scotland, June 17, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Over 70 leading California-based companies, including all Fortune 500 companies in the state, are being targeted as part of a new campaign to attract inward investment to Scotland.
The country's leader, First Minister Alex Salmond, has personally written to top executives at leading companies which have been identified by Scottish Development International as potential investors in advance of his visit to the US on a trade mission.
In his letter, which is part of a wider SDI campaign to encourage some of the world's most successful companies to consider setting up operations in Scotland, the First Minister highlights the benefits of choosing Scotland over any other nation.
The First Minister will be reinforcing the message that Scotland is ready to do business during his four-day visit to California. He stresses in his letter that Scotland - with its highly-skilled workforce and a cost-competitive business location - is a land of opportunity.
The First Minister said:
"Scotland is already an economic success story and we make no apologies for going after new business at every opportunity. We perform better economically than everywhere else in the UK bar the southeast of England and that brings major business opportunities.
"Scottish Development International's campaign is backed by a number of companies already investing in Scotland such as Pfizer and Amazon and the message is absolutely clear.
"Scotland is a land of major opportunity and it is open for business. We have a long and impressive track record in life sciences, sciences, technology and creative industries developing an environment where ingenuity and innovation can create jobs and wealth for Scotland.
"Even without our offshore oil and gas reserves, Scotland has the highest GDP in the UK outside London and southeast England.
"We have five universities in the world's top 200, we rank first in the world in research productivity per unit of GDP and second in the world in research impact.
"Business operating costs for key functions can be almost a third lower here.
"This campaign will also send the message directly to the heart of US business community with print and online advertising running in The Wall Street Journal, San Francisco Business Times, New York Times and San Francisco Chronicle.
Danny Cusick, President, Americas, Scottish Development International, said:
"SDI has seven offices across North America, including a significant presence in California, to provide support and collaboration opportunities for key North American companies.
"This campaign is part of a global drive to attract new investment to Scotland. There has been a significant level of inward investment success over the last 12 months, with Amazon, FMC Technologies and State Street all making significant investments in Scotland. SDI is building on this with a continued focus on securing new, sustainable jobs and opportunities.
"It is clear that Scotland remains a location of choice due to our winning combination of qualities, including our highly skilled and educated workforce and efficient operating costs.
"This is an excellent opportunity to highlight Scotland's competitive advantages to some of California's biggest companies."
Kathleen Gallagher Tepfer, Scottish Development International, 203-438-6694
Dariel Curren, Development Counsellors International, Cell: 203-733-7942
SOURCE Scottish Development International