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WeWork’s Birmingham Deliberations Show How Vital It Is To Office Sector

Interior at 55 Colmore Row, Birmingham

WeWork has not yet committed to lease a big chunk of 55 Colmore Row in Birmingham, which could lead to the space being vacant for more than a year.

Nuveen, the building’s owner, has not yet secured WeWork as a tenant for the third and fourth floors and part of the ground floor of 55 Colmore Row, according to the Financial Times, which cited internal documents it had seen.

That could lead to the space remaining vacant for a further 18 months, the documents said. The space accounts for about a third of the 158K SF office building.

Nuveen said WeWork might still lease the space, and pointed to the good relationship it has with the company elsewhere: Last year the pair teamed up to buy Devonshire Square in the City of London for £580M, with WeWork leasing a big chunk of the space at the 620K SF, 13-building campus.

The FT said the situation highlighted the importance of WeWork to the office real estate sector: There are few other large tenants around willing to take long, expensive leases.

Nuveen bought the building for £98M in January 2018, with the price representing a yield of 4.9%, the lowest in Birmingham since 2015. The rest of the space is leased to Savills, the RICS and law firm Pinsent Masons.

WeWork is reported to be taking its first Birmingham lease at 6 Brindleyplace, where it will occupy 96K SF. It is also in talks to lease space at Snowhill and Paradise Circus.

Related Topics: WeWork, Nuveen, Colmore Row