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Flexible office occupancy rates recover to pre-pandemic levels

Flexible office spaces in central London have seen their occupancy rates recover to pre-pandemic levels, new data shows.

A majority of the world’s top 30 flexible workspace providers have seen now seen occupancy rates in their central London offices surpass levels of 60 per cent, a survey by Knight Frank shows.

A further 88 per cent of the top 30 flexible office companies – including WeWork, The Office Group, and IWG – said they are now planning to expand their office footprint, by adding new sites.

More than a third of those surveyed said financial services companies had driven demand in central London, while 25 per cent said demand was being by tech companies.

“Flexible offices have witnessed a post-pandemic surge from the sectors that have traditionally driven office demand in [the City and West End] submarkets,” Knight Frank exec Amanda Lim said.

“Companies of all sizes, from start-ups to larger established businesses, increasingly value the option to move straight into a workspace and easily upsize depending on headcount trends and how much their employees use the office,” Lim said.

One major deal this year saw tech recruitment company Levin let the entire 23,000 sq ft of space in British Land’s 155 Bishopsgate tower.

The research comes on the back of prior research by Knight Frank showing almost half of UK businesses plan to include more flexible office spaces into their property portfolios.

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