Cardiff Office market’s bumper year

Upward trend expected to continue

3 February 2016

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Figures released by Cooke & Arkwright’s Business Space team show that more than 617,000 sq ft of office space was let in 2015, up 14% on 2014. Associate Tim Lawley comments, “2015 was a bumper year with two major deals made in the final quarter, and with several high profile deals expected to complete this year we expect this upward trend to continue for 2016. The highest year we have on record was in 2011, with around 652,000 sq ft let, which included the 195,000 sq ft to Admiral in the city centre.

“Figures were boosted in 2015 by the BBC letting at Central Square of 150,000 sq ft and Public Health Wales at Capital Quarter for 51,000 sq ft. An additional 250,000 sq ft or so was also achieved through other office lettings throughout the city, demonstrating an overall confidence in the market and making it the second most successful year for deals since 1995.

“As Cardiff adopts even more Grade A office space, we have seen tenants such as the BBC and Blake Morgan commit even before the buildings have been completed and seeing big players such as these move into the city is no doubt having an effect on companies looking for space.”

Cooke & Arkwright have been providing rating valuation advice to The Welsh Rugby Union Limited (“WRU”) and Millennium Stadium plc for many years. They were recently successful in achieving substantial reductions in the assessments of the Millennium Stadium, covering both the 2005 and 2010 rating list. These negotiated reductions yielded savings of c.£3.5m which, crucially, allows the WRU to re-invest in rugby throughout Wales. They advise the WRU across the group portfolio including the National Centre of Excellence in the Vale of Glamorgan. The valuation issues across the WRU portfolio are complex requiring a high level of understanding of the funding and finances of professional sport in Wales. Cooke & Arkwright’s experience and understanding of these issues and application to the rating valuation have yielded these substantial negotiated reductions. The WRU and the Millennium Stadium entrust our work to organisations with the required levels in experience and expertise in dealing with these complex issues. I am glad to say we have this expertise in Wales. I would have no hesitation in recommending ratepayers making use of this Welsh based expertise.

Steve Phillips, Group Finance Director, Welsh Rugby Union Group