Early signs of improvement in demand for serviced office space in London are being reported by Avanta Managed Offices, the London-focused business centre operator.
Avanta’s managing director, David Alberto, commented, “Despite the general economic challenges of the past 12 months, our business in London has remained remarkably robust. Avanta’s like-for-like revenue was up 27.5% in the year to March 2009 and like-for-like EBITDA up to Â£6.7m.“Since year end, occupancies have improved and enquiry levels are up across the board. We are trading ahead of plan and demand is strong. Our focus on delivering high quality service has meant that renewals are well above average and we are grateful for the continued commitment of both our clients and staff. We are also encouraged by the fact that the last quarter has seen positive movement in workstation rates.
“Although it is too early to predict long term growth, our continued high levels of occupancy, increasing demand and early signs of rate growth are welcome and are testament to the strength of our business and bode well for the future. We are continuing to grow our business, taking over existing business centres in Mayfair and Edinburgh and have pipeline of new projects in London. ”
“Whilst the UK market remains robust, the company has decided to close operations in its two Mumbai business centres. Both centres have healthy occupancy levels, having opened before the market downturn in 2008; however workstation rates have proven insufficient to break even based on the inflated rents demanded by landlords.
“The situation in New Delhi is more positive and we shall be retaining the Statesman House business centre as part of our portfolio. The company is working closely with all clients and staff in its Mumbai centres to ensure a smooth transition across to the building owners or new operators.”