The chairman of water giant Severn Trent has hailed the company’s move from Birmingham to Coventry as good for the company and good for the city.
Sir John Egan, who was raised and educated in the city, will help oversee the creation of the company’s new base at St John’s Street which will bring 1,700 existing jobs to Coventry.
Birmingham-based Stoford Developments is building the seven-storey, 170,000 sq ft headquarters which will be one of the most environmentally efficient commercial buildings in the city.
The development is being showcased by Coventry City Council at the MIPIM property show in France.
Sir John, who is a past chairman and chief executive of Jaguar Cars, said the move would bring many benefits for Severn Trent and the city.
He said: "It is a very exciting move for Severn Trent. I think with all the concerns on climate change that companies will look to locate near natural transport hubs and in many cases that will mean city centres. We will be relocating from several centres across the Midlands and that will allow us to operate more efficiently both from a business and environmental point of view.
"We are planning to build a very low CO2 building which will be fit for the 21st century, good for our business and make a contribution to Coventry city centre.
"When we need to recruit to fill vacancies, we will be looking to hire high quality staff who will be a representative cross section of local people and we intend to play our full part in the regeneration of the city centre."
David Holt, of city-based D&P Holt, acted as consultant surveyor on the deal and believes it will be one of the single most significant projects to come to the city centre in the last decade.
He said: "It has long been recognised that Coventry needs more high quality commercial developments to bring high quality jobs to the city centre.
"Severn Trent is a FTSE 100 company and it is making a massive commitment to Coventry and its arrival is the best news possible for the city centre."
D&P Holt is one of 15 private sector companies partnering Coventry City Council at MIPIM, giving Coventry its largest ever presence at the show.