In recent years, the UK’s serviced office market has enjoyed robust growth, with London recording near 20% growth rates and outperforming the country’s other office markets. London now accounts for over 25% of the entire UK serviced office sector.
The partners are in discussions regarding two central office buildings, which are likely to be the venture’s first acquisitions.
Forum Partners and Office Space in Town have committed in excess of £30m ($50m) in the first round of equity and are in advanced negotiations with blue-chip property and financial investors for further funding commitments, which could raise the platform’s equity capacity to £100m.
The joint venture’s focus is primarily in London’s zone one, with a particular emphasis on the west London, midtown and central areas. The strategy targets commercial properties in excess of 25,000 square feet and within a four minute walk of a tube station or rail links. The joint venture can acquire vacant or soon-to-be vacant offices, and offices in need of refurbishment.
“We are actively looking to buy office buildings; we have the funding in place to quickly build a strong portfolio as well as a strong track record as both operators and investors in the serviced office sector,” said Giles Fuchs, co-founder and CEO of Office Space in Town.
The properties in the first joint venture, launched in 2012, consist of three London serviced offices in Liverpool Street, St Pauls and Waterloo, the latter of which was opened earlier this year.
Andrew Close of Masons Property Advisors City, a serviced office specialist, acted as property advisor on all previous purchases and will continue to advise the partnership.