There is a re-balancing coming for global business. Growing urban business centers in emerging economies are poised to take their places on the global stage. In a new report, McKinsey Global Institute researchers project that by 2025 45% of Fortune Global 500 companies will be based in emerging economies (though by then we may need to change that label). In emerging regions, the leading cities for business today are likely to capture a disproportionate share of company growth in the future. The number of large companies based in São Paolo, for instance, could more than triple by 2025. Beijing and Istanbul could have more than twice as many head offices as they do today. Yet company headquarters will become more dispersed across the emerging world: about 280 of its up-and-coming cities could host a large company for the first time, thus becoming new hubs in global industry networks. Although many city officials focus on luring corporate head offices, relatively few companies actually move them. But as thousands of global businesses expand into new markets, giving themselves a real choice of locations, the more promising opportunity for cities lies in attracting foreign subsidiaries. China is without a doubt the most powerful growth engine for new global companies, and now is the time for forward-thinking cities to build their reputations among its business leaders. The largest foreign subsidiaries cluster heavily in just a few key cities in each region of the world. Thanks to the highly effective efforts of Singapore’s economic-development board, that country is far and away the location of choice for Western multinationals setting up operations in Asia’s emerging economies. Other cities should learn from Singapore’s approach. The quality of the business environment isn’t the only consideration. Cities with reputations for a high quality of life—such as Prague, Sydney, and Toronto—have been more successful than others in attracting the foreign operations of multinationals. But in selecting locations for future expansion, the emerging world’s more diverse companies may consider a broader set of criteria, including the personal ties of executives educated abroad, the need to diversify family holdings, reputation building at home, or an exceptional willingness to enter frontier markets. Access the full report, Urban world: The shifting global business landscape , here .