Among the biggest dangers for the post-Brexit City is that too many brilliant British start-ups in biotechnology, financial innovation and online consumer enterprises head to New York in search of rocket-powered valuations.
Where the money goes, too often intellectual property follows.
It is worrying that Oxford-based Immunocore, pioneer of an immunology treatment for cancer, has decided to take the Nasdaq route.
Float fight: Among the biggest dangers for the post-Brexit City is that too many brilliant British start-ups head to New York in search of rocket-powered valuations
More encouraging is the decision understood to have been taken by food dispatch platform Deliveroo to seek a London quotation.
Founder Will Shu was an advocate of New York and it took persuasion by City advisers to convince him that the London Stock Exchange (LSE) is the right place.
As a UK enterprise that is growing in Europe seeking an initial public offering in the US, where it is not yet operating, could only be driven by valuation ambitions.
It is just as well that Shu is not taking advice from the newly hipster former BT boss Gavin Patterson, now a tech maven with Salesforce.
He recently observed that if he were a tech entrepreneur he would head West. Deliveroo’s seriousness about the UK is underlined by its ability to attract Next chief executive Simon Wolfson as a non-executive director – a decision based around Deliveroo’s ‘advanced technology’.
His involvement at a moment when he is also in line to buy Topshop signals that he is looking for fresh challenges, having steered Next through the financial crisis, new UK-Europe trade arrangements and the pandemic.
The latest fundraising, which values Deliveroo at £5.2billion, sets it on a course to go public as soon as the second quarter of this year.
As acquisition-minded Just Eat Takeaway also has a London quotation, and the The Hut Group IPO has gone down well, there does seem to be a growing appetite for UK-based ‘business to consumer’ platforms to float here.
The LSE has already signalled that it would like to see an easing of rules governing dual listings, to make it a more attractive venue for tech public offerings.
Another potential piece of competitive advantage for the City is new technology being rolled out by Primary Bid (in which the LSE has a stake), which has developed an app to make it easier for private investors to take part in tech offers.
The app would be added to the website of the company floating and direct investors to the prospectus and an easy link to retail platforms such as AJ Bell and Barclays Smart Investor.
As a rule, the big investment banks, which dominate the IPO market, disregard private investors and view retail offers as far too much faff.
There is an expectation that this new IPO technology for the retail investor could be deployed as soon as the next month or so when UK fintech concern Pension Bee is launched in London.
Consumers of tech products will receive a retail investing opportunity and the City gain a point of difference with Wall Street.
Jette Nygaard-Andersen can look forward to a longer stint at Ladbrokes owner Entain than she might have expected.
The Danish non-executive emerged as chief executive material when Israeli Shay Segev abruptly quit after just seven months, perhaps fearing he would be swamped if MGM were successful in its £8billion pursuit of the UK’s sports betting champion.
If the Entain board hoped to drag a higher bid out of MGM it ought to have known better. MGM and its biggest investor Barry Diller have called its bluff.
The British gambling leader is spared to live in the UK for another day with the share price cratering.
The 50/50 joint venture between the two companies presumably remains intact, which gives Entain a decent foothold in US sports betting.
Entain’s challenge now is to navigate the increasing scrutiny on the damage caused by problem gambling and strengthen the company’s governance.
That may require more than lady luck.
It is no great surprise that branch footfall at banks has tumbled in the pandemic.
Yet the demand for branch banking from the elderly, the infirm and small business should return once Covid becomes history.
By axing 82 more branches now HSBC, the UK’s richest and biggest bank, has acted prematurely.