Energy Voice | Black gold fuelling office need

Higher oil prices are contributing to growing demand for office space in Aberdeen, new figures have revealed.

According to property consultancy CBRE Scotland, the Granite City office market continued its “steady” start to 2018 in the second quarter.

CBRE said 89,776sq ft of accommodation was transacted during the three months to June 30, slightly more than first quarter take-up of 88,774sq ft – taking the total for the first half of 2018 to 178,550sq ft.

H1 2018 also saw a new record set for prime rents in Aberdeen, with £32.50 per sq ft achieved at the Silver Fin building in Union Street.

There were 50 office deals in and around the city over the six-month period, which is up 67% on a year ago.

Amy Tyler, a chartered surveyor in CBRE’s Aberdeen office, said: “We have certainly witnessed an improvement in sentiment in the Aberdeen office market.

“This is mainly attributed to the increase in oil price, which peaked at just under $80 per barrel at the end of June from circa $65 per barrel at the start of the year.

“This is beginning to filter through to the office market, where we have experienced an encouraging increase in demand for space.”

The largest letting of H1 2018 was 19,000sq ft to Aberdeen Journals, which took the top floor of 1MSq, Marischal Square.

CBRE said energy sector demand was encouraging, with deals including

BWO Offshore securing 10,325sq ft in Horizons House, Ping Petroleum taking 8,777sq ft at Caledonian House, and Verus Petroleum and Cats Management taking 6,079sq ft and 4,193sq ft respectively in the Silver Fin building.

More recently, Serica Energy announced take-up of a 7,730sq ft suite at H1, Hill of Rubislaw.

Banking sector activity includes Royal Bank of Scotland taking 7,000sq ft of 2MSq, Marischal Square, and Barclays securing 3,100sq ft in the Silver Fin.

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