Central London office lettings in December 2017 reached a healthy 1.1m sq ft of deals from 40 mid-large size transactions (5,000 sq ft+) during the month. The December figure slightly outperforms the current monthly average of 1m sq ft . Annual London take-up reached 12.2m sq ft, just above the 2016 figure.
December was characterised by 13 office deals over 20,000 sq ft, which included Turner Broadcasting’s 100,000 sq ft letting at 160 Old Street, EC1; Penguin’s 83,000 sq ft letting at Embassy Gardens, SW8; Vitol took 48,000 sq ft at Nova, SW1 and Enstar took 32,000 sq ft at Creechurch Place, EC3.
Media topped the table of lettings by sector, underpinned by Turner and Penguin deals. This was followed by IT services with the large deals involving Google and Dell. Insurance and business services also performed well, helped by the lettings to Enstar and XBridge. Office deals ‘under offer’ in central London fell slightly to 3m sq ft but pending deal volumes are healthy in nearly all sub-markets.
By area, the City accounted for 39pc of the office floorspace let in December at 419,000 sq ft. The West End saw 184,000 sq ft of take-up, underpinned by Vitol. Midtown contributed 236,000 sq ft of lettings, plus 90,000 sq ft of Docklands deals. Current London office demand is calculated to be around 3m sq ft in the City and 2.7m sq ft in the West End. The volume of grade A (newly built or refurbished office space) let during the month reached 558,000 sq ft (52% of the monthly total), as transactions for new space resumed their recent strong showing.
Metropolis research is currently monitoring 640 ‘live’ London requirements, with deals for space of up to 1.8m sq ft due to sign in the next few months. Cityoffices is shortly to publish its annual review of the planning pipeline in London. Further details of planning applications and consents, with scheme by scheme detail are listed on the Cityoffices.net website. Details on the report and the Cityoffices database from firstname.lastname@example.org
The 12.2m sq ft of central London take-up recorded in 2017 (deals 5,000 sq ft and above) was slightly above the 11.9m sq ft recorded in 2016. The largest deals were lettings to Deutsche Bank, Dentsu Aegis, then 3 lettings to WeWork The serviced office sector took nearly 2m sq ft of offices in 2017. WeWork let over 1.24m sq ft (10%) of the total 2017 take-up.
As well as Business services, Financial services took 1.9m sq ft, IT sector took 1.5m sq ft, Media took 1.2m sq ft and Professional 1.1m sq ft. The City accounted for 5.1m sq ft, Midtown 2.4m sq ft, West End was 3.1m sq ft.