ESOP study: Demand for office space increased by 50.4% in the first half of 2012
In the first six months of 2012, there is an increase in Bucharest in the volume of office space requests from medium-sized companies by 50.4%, compared to the same period last year (according to the infographic in the photo gallery).
“We believe that the positive evolution of the Romanian economy during 2011, on several levels such as agriculture, investment, construction, and other sectors, created the premises for a revival of the business environment and contributed in the first half of 2012 to increase the volume of applications “, says Alexandru Petrescu, managing partner of ESOP Consulting.
II. What budgets did the companies have in the first half of 2012
From the perspective of the budgets allocated by the average companies for renting spaces, the largest share, of 78%, was still in the first semester, the requests of up to 11 euro/sqm/month (according to the chart below).
This segment of up to 11 euro/sqm/month has had, in the last four years, a share in continuous ascent, from 18% in 2008 to 78% in 2012 (details in the chart in the photo gallery).
III. From a structural point of view, the demand is different from 2008
In 2008, the main driving force of the need for new offices was the expansion or increase of comfort and the company’s image, the most common being the requests for office space of over 15 euro/sqm/month (55% of total requests), and the demand under 11 euro/month had a share of only 18% of the total requests.
In 2012, the main reason for relocations remains cost optimization. Consequently, an overwhelming majority of demand is concentrated in the segment of spaces with rents of up to 11 euro/sqm/month (the share being 78% of the total volume of requests).
IV. OFFER: The stock remains high, putting further pressure on rents
In the ESOP portfolio, at the end of the first half of 2012, there are 782 buildings with office space available for rent immediately, of which 430 units are in business centers (totaling 728,124 sqm) and 352 in villas (totaling 122,521 sqm) – details in the graphic in the photo gallery.
From the point of view of the structuring according to the rent per sq m, the offer of office spaces presents significant percentage gaps compared to the demand, these being more accentuated on the segment of spaces in business centers. Out of the total offer, only 43% of the spaces have rents of up to 11 euro/sqm/month (compared to the demand that groups on this segment of budgets 78% of the total volume of requests).
In 2012 we can say that we are witnessing the first signals of the resumption of the dynamism of the requests coming from the medium companies.
In the first 6 months of 2012, the demand from medium-sized companies increased by 50.4% compared to the same period of 2011. However, the supply is still higher than the demand, so there are premises for owners to have more flexibility in negotiations with tenants.
“Cost optimization remains the main reason why a company is looking for a new headquarters. However, there is also a concern for increasing the image or comfort in the office, in the same budget, as the market allows this. Although companies interested in expanding the space have appeared, and companies that are now being established or representatives of foreign companies entering the Romanian market have appeared, the number of these is insufficient to produce a balance between supply and demand “, he declares Alexandru Petrescu, managing partner of ESOP Consulting.
In the context of the accentuated degradation of medical and educational services in the state system, the fields that registered a notable expansion in 2012 are private medical clinics and private educational institutions (be they kindergartens, schools, after-school).