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String of deals takes 6 Wellington Place, Leeds to 100 per cent let

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16 Mar 2016

Signalling the strength of the Leeds market, MEPC is pleased to announce that 100 per cent of the office space in 6 Wellington Place, a brand new 104,000sq ft building, is now fully let within four weeks of practical completion.

Wellington Place - a landmark development located in the centre of Leeds just minutes from the train station and city centre - is funded by a joint venture between Hermes Investment Management, the £23 billion manager focused on delivering superior, sustainable, risk adjusted returns to its clients – responsibly, and Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB), a professional investment management organisation that invests on behalf of 19 million Canada Pension Plan contributors and beneficiaries. It is being developed by MEPC.

In a move that best demonstrates the strength of the Leeds economy, three of the deals signed are with existing occupiers at Wellington Place who are enjoying business growth and therefore need to expand their business accommodation

6 Wellington Place will house Sky Betting & Gaming who has confirmed it will acquire an additional two floors, taking its total space at the MEPC development to 65,000 sq ft across two buildings. The company, who is on a massive recruitment drive to become the leading digital employer in the UK, will employ in excess of 750 staff at its Leeds Head Quarters.

Richard Flint, Chief Executive of Sky Betting & Gaming, said: “Thanks to our continued revenue growth and significant increase in headcount we have outgrown our current office space. It is great to be able to expand into a state of the art development so close to our existing headquarters. Our ambition is to be the best digital business in the UK and that means investing in our people and our facilities so we’re delighted to be taking two floors in the new building. We’re looking forward to moving in during the summer.” Netpremacy, the global network, security and cloud specialists, is also upgrading to a bigger office space in 6 Wellington Place to house additional team members and to meet growing business demand. The firm will now reside in office space totalling 5,000 sq ft.

The first tenant to agree terms in the building was Squire Patton Boggs, the Global law firm who will move into 32,000 sq ft of office space over two floors, followed by Equifax who have made the move to relocate their offices from Bradford to Leeds. Fit outs are now underway and companies will be moving in from March. Additionally, law-firm Shulman’s is another existing occupier who will further expand its presence from two to three floors at 10 Wellington Place. It will acquire an additional 5,000 sq ft taking its total space in the scheme to 12,699 sq ft. Its Leeds office will be home to 180 staff. All companies at Wellington Place benefit from state-of-the-art working environments as well as monthly street food lunches, 5-a-side floodlit football pitches, exercise classes, urban garden allotments plus lunchtime and after work activities all with a focus on wellbeing.

James Dipple, chief executive of MEPC, said: “It’s a huge achievement to have a building fully let so close to completion. This clearly demonstrates that the quality of development we’re building is hitting the mark with occupiers. I firmly believe that the Wellington Place environment helps businesses flourish which is reflected in the recent deals signed with existing tenants who are all expanding. These businesses looking to acquire more space not only appreciate the high quality and specification of the new buildings here but also clearly see a great benefit in being part of the dynamic and vibrant business community we are organically nurturing at Wellington Place.”

“We’re not just another developer building a new scheme. Wellington Place is a community enjoyed by more than 2,000 professionals who benefit from the environment we have created for them in the heart of the new corporate district of Leeds. The next building scheduled for completion is 5 Wellington Place which offers 75,000 sq ft of space and is due to complete summer 2016. Already we’re seeing strong levels of interest in this building and as a result it’s likely that 3 Wellington Place will be breaking ground soon.” Chris Taylor, Head of Private Markets at Hermes Investment Management, said: “The success of 6 Wellington Place is testament to our long-term strategy and focus on investing in regeneration schemes in major city centres. In partnership with the public sector, we are able to provide excellent public realm and accessibility and meet occupiers’ requirements for attracting and retaining talent in an increasingly urban environment.”

Roger Marsh OBE, Chair of Leeds City Region Enterprise Partnership (the LEP), added: “This latest announcement from Wellington Place shows how demand for space within Leeds and the wider City Region is at a post-recession high. These lettings show why the recent Deloitte Crane Survey 2016, identified that office construction was at its highest since 2007, and demand still high, thanks to the drive for north shoring businesses.

“I’m also encouraged not only by the speed with which 6 Wellington Place has been fully let; but by the fact that part of this is as a result of indigenous business growth for a number of the developments existing tenants. I feel that the growth of these firms emphasise how we, as a City Region are moving in an increasingly positive direction to deliver upon our economic potential, and importantly help to rebalance the UK economy.”

This month, CPPIB also partnered with Hermes Investment Management at the £1bn Paradise development in Birmingham by taking 50% stake in the £150m first phase.