Tri-City among country’s top corporate office havens. Insight from the SSC Heroes event in Gdansk
SSC Heroes in Gdansk

| autor: Invest in Pomerania

Tri-City's shared services sector (SSC) is set to catch up with other prime locations in Poland as it experiences accelerated growth.

It must be said: Tri-city overslept a bit the shared service centers’ arrival period in Poland. But it is now set to see accelerated growth of the sector, forecasted to reach 300 000 employees in Poland by 2020 and hundreds of thousands of square meters of modern office space available already, or under construction.

This comes clearly across from the last Next Generation Shared Services Day arranged by SSC Heroes in Gdansk’s panoramic Sky Club. The initiative is aimed at enhancing reputation of the shared services industry and informing managers about the sector’s development in Central & Eastern Europe.

– We are dedicated to look deep into the future of the shared services industry from various angles, thus touching the most important points of reference for leaders in the sector – says Thom Barnhardt, founder of CEE Business Media and a range of other industry summits covering Central & Eastern Europe.

This time nearly a hundred participants gathered to talk about the most important trends influencing SSC sector in Tri City.

Top corporate haven

So what’s the situation and what’s to be expected in the next couple of years? As we speak, foundation stones are being laid under yet another new office building in Tri-City. Already 50 percent of the total office stock in Gdansk, Gdynia and Sopot are A or B+ class offices – and even more is on the drafting table. Just to name a few ongoing projects: the growing hub in Oliwa (107 000 m2 of top office space under construction and 40 000 m2 planned), Gdynia (3 500 m2 under construction and 128 000 m2 planned) or Young City, located on the former Gdansk shipyard area (160 000 m2 under construction and 108 000 m2 planned). Data is provided by JLL.

Offices alone however, are not enough to attract investors and employees alike. Although there are still many misconceptions about SSC centers, the word has spread that the modern shared services industry is not simply call centers and back office anymore. Some companies are already heavily investing in front office operations and advanced processes. For that, they need more local talents.

Advanced processes arrive

– For a long time Krakow was one of the prime choices for investors, it was an optimal location – said Tomasz Bortlisz, director at Gdansk’s newcomer Arrow Electronics. – But Gdańsk attracted us by its talent pool and good cooperation with authorities, such as Invest in Pomerania.

Marcin Grzegory, deputy director at Invest in Pomerania, confirms that the region has managed to built a global reputation. – So far it’s been mainly American companies that are our leading investors employment-wise, but a significant share of FDIs come also from nordic countries – said Grzegory. – And although there are not so many centers established by German companies, employment of German speakers in Pomerania is big, as centers of different origins want to service their German markets from here. The region is also under constant surveillance by Indian companies and started to attract interest from Japanese investors.

There is also no need to worry about longevity of these investments. Once the SSC growth slows down, Pomerania should benefit from the expansion of advanced Business Process Outsourcing and constantly developing Centers of Excellence.

Read our quarterly BSS report 

The meeting was wrapped up with a surprise appearance of Sean Bobbitt, co-producer of animated film "Loving Vincent", who brought with him one of 2000 hand painted frames from the critically acclaimed production. This unique Polish-British film was among top five productions in the running for the Oscar in the Best Animated Feature category. Although it lost to Coco, it remains a stunning achievement.

– We made it possible to create trailers, advertise the production and present it to more investors – said the director of the Capital Fund of Pomerania, Paweł Zając, in an interview with “Strefa Biznesu” recently.  – We saw the potential in the project.

The fund that operates under the umbrella of Pomerania Development Agency Co. was the very first investor in the film.


Joanna Irzabek

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