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Is HS2 Driving The Market As Serviced Offices Claim 55% Of Birmingham Take-Up?

Somerset House, Temple Street, where BE Office took 38K SF

Serviced office providers dominated office deals in Birmingham city centre in the second quarter, taking 55% of the total space transacted. HS2-related requirements could be at the root of the growth.

According to data from KWB, the April to June quarter saw 94K SF let to serviced office operators over five deals, equating to 55% of total transactions. Last year, serviced offices accounted for 20% of the total space transacted. From January 2017 to June 2018, serviced offices have been responsible for 313K SF of office take-up.

Serviced office operators have dominated the list of larger Birmingham deals, often with HS2 links in the background.

The largest office letting in Birmingham in Q2 was to serviced office provider BE Office, a first-time occupier in the city, which took 38K SF at Somerset House, Temple Street, while the third biggest deal was to Instant Managed Offices with a letting of 21K SF at 2 Colmore Square.

“It is understood that the space taken at 2 Colmore Square is on behalf of Highways England and underscores Instant Managed Offices’ business model of taking traditional leases on behalf of a single occupier which then takes a shorter licence on the space," KWB Office Specialist Malcolm Jones said. 

Last year Instant Managed Offices took almost 50K SF in four deals for occupiers, with HS2 believed to be driving three of those deals, as well as this quarter’s Highways England letting.