19 August 2016
Creative Businesses Drive South Bank Office Take-up

Office take-up in London’s South Bank market is continuing to be driven by businesses from the DAMIT sectors (Design / Advertising, marketing & PR / Media / Internet / Technology & telecoms). DAMIT occupiers accounted for 32% of the 189,927 sq ft of office space that was let in the second quarter of this year.

Simon Smith, Partner, commented: “Occupiers from the ‘creative’ business sectors have accounted for close to 2m sq ft of South Bank office take-up during the past three years.

“They are increasingly drawn to the location from other parts of London by the quality of space on offer, the much lower total occupancy cost and the transport links. The missing part of the jigsaw has been the quality of shopping and range of places to eat and drink but that is now being addressed by a series of new projects which will create thousands of square feet of amenities throughout the South Bank.”

The redevelopment of London Bridge Station will alone create 85,000 sq ft of retailing while projects such as Southbank Place, One Blackfriars, Leake Street Arches and South Bank Central will also provide a wide range of new shops, restaurants and bars.

Neil Davies, Partner, Retail comments: “A transformation of the retail and bar/restaurant scene is now taking place throughout the South Bank. The riverside locations were already relatively well served but we’re now seeing a proliferation of the amenities that occupiers demand throughout the South Bank postcodes.

“The redevelopment of the Vinopolis site – which just received planning consent - will bring 112,000 sq of retail space and 12,000 sq ft of leisure and create another hub for a longer and more diverse trading day.”

Against this backdrop of continued occupier demand and a broader based amenity offer, the South Bank continues to attract investment. More than £4.7bn has flowed into South Bank commercial property during the past three years and a further £142m was invested in Q2.

Alastair Hilton, Partner, Investment: “All of the assets which changed hands in the second quarter were sold by UK investors. They found willing buyers in the form of international investors who accounted for 69% of transactional activity. This also reflects how South Bank as a market has matured.

“The largest deal of the quarter - the £48.2m sale of the Harlequin Building in Southwark Street – was emblematic of the current market. It involved a UK fund – Aberdeen Asset Management – selling to a US-based international real estate investor, Meadow Partners.”