CoStar Analysis: Which Local Enterprise Partnerships have attracted the most office investment?

By Grant Lonsdale - Monday, October 23, 2017 11:33

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CoStar revealed last week that Oxfordshire outperformed in its analysis of occupier demand across the 38 Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) areas. But what about investment volumes?

London topped the investment table, where office investment is ranked in proportion to an LEP’s stock size for the period Q3 2016-Q2 2017. Overseas demand for trophy assets such as the Leadenhall Building in the City and Rathbone Square in the West End continued despite the wider uncertainty caused by the Brexit vote.

Spelthorne Council’s £360m purchase of BP’s Sunbury campus helped Enterprise M3 into second spot, while strong investor demand for offices in Reading, Maidenhead, and Bracknell lifted Thames Valley Berkshire above Hertfordshire into third place. Greater Cambridge & Peterborough ranked fifth, boosted by Aviva Investors’ £87m forward-funding of 50 & 60 Station Road, Cambridge.

Elsewhere in the top 10, Coast to Capital fared well, supported by two big purchased by Legal & General. The insurer acquired its Kingswood Campus offices in Tadworth for £65m (6.2% NIY), as well as Atkins’ under construction headquarters in Epsom for £47m (4.1% NIY). Gloucestershire, also came out strongly in the rankings: the smallest LEP area to feature in the top 10 recorded an impressive £80m of investment. Greater Manchester, despite recording the third-strongest volume of all the LEP areas, placed eighth in the index, owing to its enormous stock size (at 60 million sq ft, it is by far the largest LEP area outside of London).

Greater Birmingham & Solihull and the Leeds City Region featured outside of the top 10, reflecting a quieter period of office investment in these LEP areas compared to previous years. Meanwhile, the five lowest ranked LEP areas recorded a combined investment total of just £20 million.

Click here to download the full table


The CoStar LEP Activity Index captures office occupier and investment activity across England’s 38 LEP areas.

The ranking system measures demand and liquidity by comparing net absorption and investment volume in each LEP area during the second half of 2016 and the first half of 2017, relative to its stock size and peers. CoStar is uniquely placed to perform this analysis, drawing on its market-leading database of all commercial property across the UK.

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