British Land launches Storey flexible workspace brand

British Land launches Storey flexible workspace brand 0

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British Land has launched Storey, a new brand providing flexible workspace for businesses employing between 20 to 70 people and larger organisations seeking additional space on flexible terms. Created to fill a perceived gap in the London office market which customers say is not being satisfied, Storey provides offices for companies who have outgrown co-working space and whose needs have evolved. Storey also suits existing or larger office customers seeking project or shorter term space on top of their core requirements. Storey will operate within British Land’s existing London assets, predominantly at its Broadgate, Paddington Central and Regent’s Place campuses. These have ‘a critical mass of office customers and offer the ideal environment for ambitious organisations looking to grow. Storey customers will be able to access facilities traditionally reserved for larger organisations and automatically benefit from the broader campus environment where a focus on wellbeing also supports growth and productivity.’

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Commercial property giant acquires controlling stake in London based flexible office provider

Commercial property giant acquires controlling stake in London based flexible office provider 0

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While we should never read too much into a single piece of business, the news that one of the world’s largest property investors is buying a young and still growing British flexible office provider is surely a sign of things to come. As Blackstone, a private equity giant with £140 billion of real estate assets worldwide acquires a controlling stake in The Office Group for £500 million, we must view the deal in the context of a market in which the most dynamic players are WeWork and its contemporaries. The Office Group has grown from seven buildings to thirty-six since it was founded in 2003 and provides flexible office and coworking space to start-ups, freelancers, small businesses and increasingly, corporates such as Facebook, Dropbox and British Gas.

Bisley’s classic MultiDrawer recognised with a Design Guild Mark

Bisley’s classic MultiDrawer recognised with a Design Guild Mark 0

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Bisley’s iconic MultiDrawer, one of the office’s most recognisable products for 60 years, has been awarded a Design Guild Mark, recognising its timeless qualities in design, functionality and quality. Now approaching six decades from its launch, the MultiDrawer has never lost its appeal, becoming an icon in storage. Almost 2 million of the diminutive cabinets have been sold, helping the brand name Bisley become part of the lexicon in the German language to describe storage cabinets, such is the reach of this British born icon. Created by Freddy Brown, founder of Bisley and an experienced metal worker, the MultiDrawer was first made in 1958. The Bisley factory was expert in metalwork having evolved from car body repairs, then making metal waste paper bins and, during the war, designing and making the large metal containers that were dropped by parachute into war zones to deliver supplies. The Design Guild Mark is awarded by The Furniture Makers’ Company, the furnishing industry’s charity, in order to drive excellence and raise the profile of British design and innovation.  The award recognises the highest standards in the design of furniture in volume production, by the best designers working in Britain or British designers working abroad.

Overbury delivers new head office for iconic British brand Fred Perry

Overbury delivers new head office for iconic British brand Fred Perry 0

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Fit out firm Overbury has completed the interiors of a new head office and showroom for iconic British brand Fred Perry in Clerkenwell, London.  The refurbishment of 27,000 sq ft in a historic Victorian warehouse supports Fred Perry’s move from its long-term address in Covent Garden to a fashionable corner of London. In 2015, the company leased two 19th century warehouse buildings on the corner of Mount Pleasant and Warner Street, opposite a former Royal Mail Sorting Office. Working with architects Buckley Gray Yeoman, Overbury delivered the fit out of seven floors, which included the installation of new floors, ceilings, walls and mechanical and electrical systems. Following a four month programme, the result is a space that reflects the brand’s British identity and brings the brand’s head office and showroom under one roof.

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City of London offers free public access WiFi across whole Square Mile

City of London offers free public access WiFi across whole Square Mile 0

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The City of London Corporation has announced a deal that will deliver a free, public access WiFi network, offering internet access anywhere within the Square Mile. The multi million pound project is one of the largest investments in wireless infrastructure ever seen in London. Cornerstone Telecommunications Infrastructure Ltd (CTIL) has been awarded a major 15-year contract to roll-out and manage the City of London’s new wireless network in conjunction with O2. The new network will deliver wireless services across all mobile networks for City businesses, residents and visitors.

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AHMM completes work on New Scotland Yard for Metropolitan Police

AHMM completes work on New Scotland Yard for Metropolitan Police 0

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Architects Allford Hall Monaghan Morris (AHMM) have completed design work on the new headquarters for the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) in London. The practice claims that the design ‘supports cultural organisational and conveys a new image for the MPS by creating a building that looks to engage with public and media alike’. The £60m new headquarters is a re-modelling and extension of the Curtis Green Building, a 1930s riverside site in Westminster, central London currently owned by the MPS. AHMM’s design includes the addition of new entrance and rooftop pavilions and a reworking of the existing accommodation. The new entrance is designed ‘to create a welcoming and non-institutional yet secure front door’ and reinstates the iconic revolving sign. The project has been completed as part of a major rethink of the organisation’s corporate real estate strategy.

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Jump Studios completes design for London offices of Cloudflare

Jump Studios completes design for London offices of Cloudflare 0

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London-based architecture practice Jump Studios has designed the first UK office for tech firm Cloudflare in London. The company, headquartered in San Francisco, is one of the fastest-growing start-ups in the world and is classified as a Unicorn1 company. The new office is a refurbishment of a former paper factory in London’s Southwark area. The refurbished 7,000 square foot office includes around 100 desks with large social areas connected to the outside terrace space. The central area of the office is a form of ‘spine’ constructed from OSB (Oriented-strand board). This spine maintains physical and visual connectivity throughout the floor and forms walls, rooms, storage and shelving units for Cloudflare to display tools, gadgets, books and awards. Informal meeting spaces sit within and around the spine for employees to relax and hold meetings in throughout the day.

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Interaction completes transformation of Grade II listed Victorian castle into new office

Interaction completes transformation of Grade II listed Victorian castle into new office 0

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Design and build firm Interaction, has completed the design and fit out of a Grade II listed Victorian ‘castle’ in Cirencester as the new head office of financial comparison website money.co.uk. In 2015 the firm was ranked the second fastest growing business in the UK by The Sunday Times and needed its workplace to reflect this growth, convey its culture and attract new talent. The core concept was a juxtaposition of the traditional architecture of The Castle with a contemporary interior. The design features include a bespoke Star Wars themed cinema complete with popcorn machine, two gyms, hand painted suits of armour as well as ‘Rolling Stones’ and ‘Steam Punk’ themed bathrooms. The new office incorporates a number of settings for informal meetings, private work, training, relaxing or socialising. This includes an ‘ice cave’ which can be used for an informal meeting, or to eat and socialise. There is also a ‘ski lodge’, which can be accessed through a secret door. More →

A workplace tale told in numbers: WeWork in 2016

A workplace tale told in numbers: WeWork in 2016 0

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WeWork is the weather vane for a new era in which property is increasingly consumed as a service. The company has issued a statement looking back over its achievements during the past year. It’s a tale told in numbers so makes interesting reading. The firm claims it has added 58 new spaces and now offers over 110 locations open around the world for its 80,000 members. It has opened spaces in 18 new cities including Berlin (Berlin), Beer Sheva, Seoul, Mexico City, Shanghai, Hong Kong, Montreal, Philadelphia, Atlanta, Denver and Sydney. Perhaps most tellingly, it has extended its client reach to include firms such as Microsoft, HSBC, Bacardi and Samsung. There’ll be lots of people offering up lists at this time of year detailing key workplace trends. Few will be as instructive as the numbers coming out of WeWork and the wider coworking movement.

KPMG first UK firm to publish socio-economic make-up and diversity of staff

KPMG first UK firm to publish socio-economic make-up and diversity of staff 1

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KPMG first UK firm to publish socio-economic profile of staffThe first business in the UK has published detailed workforce data outlining the socio-economic make-up of the firm as a way of understanding its workforce diversity. KPMG has published data, which measures employees’ parental occupation and education and the type of school employees attended along with graduate and school leaver socio-economic data from the past three years. It reveals that the vast majority of the workforce – 74 percent of respondents – received a state school education: 60 percent attended a non-selective state school and 14 percent attended a selective state school, with 23 percent receiving private education.  Additional detail on parental education shows that 48 percent have a parent or guardian with a university degree, while 43 percent do not. On parental occupation, 58 percent have parents in a higher managerial, administrative and professional occupation, 16 percent have parents employed in a manual occupation and 11 percent have parents in intermediate occupations. KPMG is the first business in the UK to share details of the parental occupation of its workforce, which is recognised by social mobility experts as a strong indicator of socio-economic background.

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The Work Foundation launches Commission on Good Work

The Work Foundation launches Commission on Good Work 0

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reward-gateway-offices-by-area-sq-london-ukThe Work Foundation, part of Lancaster University, has launched a new Commission on Good Work. The commission will seek answers to key questions such as ‘why is a focus on good work so important now?’,  ‘what does good work mean in a modern economy?’ and ‘how do we achieve good work?’ The initiative was launched by Work Foundation Director Lesley Giles who invited stakeholders from businesses, trade unions, professional bodies, and the public and voluntary sectors to be part of a ‘Good Work Taskforce.’ Supporting the launch were Sir Charlie Mayfield (John Lewis Partnership), Dame Fiona Kendrick (Nestle),Douglas McCormick (Sweett Group), Mark Keese (OECD), Gail Cartmail (Unite), Peter Cheese CIPD, Scott Johnson (a small business owner) and Professor Paul Sparrow (Lancaster University Management School).

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Penson completes design for artful London HQ of financial services company SEI

Penson completes design for artful London HQ of financial services company SEI 0

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se17853-minFinancial services firm SEI has taken residence at a new London headquarters designed by Penson. Located in Finsbury Square, The Alphabeta Building is spread over three floors. The 6320 sq. m, office incorporates natural materials such as upcycled timber, bold red steel and colourful walls. The office is divided into individual hubs with meeting rooms, chill-out zones, kitchenettes and pods providing a balance between open and private spaces. The new HQ is also set to house part of the West Collection, a contemporary art collection owned by Alfred P. West, Jr., Chairman and CEO of SEI, and curated by his daughter. The works include sculpture, installations drawing, painting, and photography, many of which reflect an environmental theme.

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