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Corporate Occupiers

A mixed picture in 2013

2013 was a year of marked variation in corporate occupier activity. While certain markets (including several U.S. cities, London and Mexico City) and industry sectors (i.e. technology and energy) experienced increasing levels of activity, the majority of corporate occupiers still exercised caution and conservatism. In many core global markets, the continued domination of financial services occupiers as value players served to suppress activity levels.

2014 marks a turning point

Early indicators point to a turning point in 2014. Corporate confidence is returning to long-run averages amid a more stable macroeconomic environment; PMI surveys show increased demand for products; corporate balance sheets remain strong and are now supplemented by supportive debt markets; and there is a greater willingness among senior business leaders to authorise capital expenditure.

Increasing workplace investment

While significant expansionary activity is unlikely to emerge outside of the technology and energy sectors during 2014, there are other industries, such as insurance and life sciences, that are showing improving prospects. Across the board, corporate occupiers in 2014 will continue to get to grips with their occupied portfolios through a mix of consolidation, space acquisition and workplace investment. This will be influenced by a number of broad corporate themes, namely:

  • A renewed war for talent – placing the workplace at the heart of attracting and retaining human capital
  • A growing corporate focus on employee well-being - a further driver to changes in working styles and the workplace
  • Improving M&A volumes, which will fuel portfolio restructuring
  • Selective emerging market investment. Africa is an increasing target
  • The re-emergence of sustainability considerations amid rising utility costs and concerns about energy efficiency
  • A desire to increase worker productivity and innovation – leading to a stronger consideration of the workplace at a macro and micro level.

Published:3rd February 2014

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Christian Beaudoin
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  lee elliott
Lee Elliott
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