Over a fifth of office space, a record 2.5 million sf of space all over Central London, was leased to flexible workspace operators in 2017, a growth of 190% since the year before that.
Flexible workplace operators currently occupy nearly 10.7 million sf of space across Central London, or 4% of the total office stock.
That secures London as a world leader in flexible workplaces, with New York in second place. Flexible workplace leasing has made up an average of 2.9% of the Manhattan market compared to 10.6% in London.
WeWork is London’s Biggest Individual Occupier
WeWork has become the biggest individual occupier of office space in Central London.
In the past half-decade, 2.5 million sf of space, a greater amount than any other company- has been leased by WeWork. Google came in at 1.3 million sf and Amazon at 1 million sf. This puts WeWork second only to the government in terms of leased space.
In the top ten biggest occupiers of space, WeWork is joined by three other companies that work in the same industry: The Office Group, IWG and i2 Office.
These figures represent considerable expansion compared to previous years. Not only that, they are only projected to grow as Cushman & Wakefield predict that over the next year, there will be more general demand for coworking space.
However, as this “race for space” intensifies, Cushman & Wakefield expect to see operators look for alternate accommodations like hotels, pubs and libraries that can serve as places to work.
It’s not just Central London that needs flexible workspaces. There is a high demand, possibly up to two-thirds of the UK market, outside the city as well, according to the study.
Ultimately, while the need and call for the flexible workspaces are clear, the space the companies are going after is limited, but it is not clear how willing to participate in the system alternative types of locations will be going forward.