Frankfurt competes with Dusseldorf for the position of Germany’s
media powerhouse. It’s certainly the country’s banking capital and has
ambitions to be Europe’s as well, according to Sean Pattison, director
of strategic planning at Universal Media.
’Frankfurt is sometimes known as ’Mainhatten’, because of the river and
the fact that it has a few skyscrapers. I admit it’s not Germany’s most
beautiful or interesting city, but it must be the richest. Around
650,000 people live here and the number swells to 1.5 million each day
as the commuters flood in.
’But although it’s busy, it’s very clean and orderly. One day recently
there were piles of fallen leaves in our street, and the next there
wasn’t a single leaf. It was surreal. There are exceptions, though.
Around Central Station there are loads of junkies. Scenes like this
offer a stark contrast between wealth and squalor.
’The city lacks a real centre. But you can have some fun in Saxonhausen
on the other side of the river, where there are plenty of pubs and
’You don’t need to speak German to work here, but it’s polite to be able
to say at least a few words. The Germans are proud of their language,
but they aren’t as precious about it as the French and actually enjoy
practising their English. Generally they’re very direct in business and,
of course, detail is everything.’