Google said it would spend $ 1 billion to buy an office building near Tottenham Court Road in London and make a big bet on employees getting back to work.
The Silicon Valley giant believes the office is “a place for face-to-face collaboration and connection,” so it’s moving despite building a huge new headquarters in nearby King’s Cross.
Combined with other offices across the UK, the purchase of Central St. Giles will allow Google to accept 10,000 workers. It currently employs 6,400 people in the UK, but has added nearly 700 jobs over the past year and says it currently has 165 open roles.
Investing in Central St. Giles comes despite uncertainties about workers’ willingness to return to the office.
In the UK, vacancy rates rise during a pandemic, creating millions of square feet of office space. Shutter or conversion For other uses such as housing as a demand for workspace contracts.
Realtors expect the shift to more flexible work to make most of the market redundant in the coming years.
However, high-end offices with high environmental confidence continue to be in demand from tenants and investors who need to meet more people. Severe emissions Set goals and compete for talent.
Within Google, the company said that “some” UK employees have already decided to permanently move to remote work. Worldwide, about 20 percent of workers are licensed to work full-time from home.
The company’s policy on working from home has seen some revisions and postponements during the pandemic. Recently, I told my employees that I am aiming for three days a week in the office model.
The search giant’s leadership has also taken a firm stance on vaccination and has announced a series of measures, including paid and unpaid vacations, for those who refuse to jab.
Google said some of the investment would include diverting existing office space, such as creating a “campfire” space for the purpose of “non-strengthening” the office.
In a statement, Google Chief Financial Officer Ruth Porat said, “We have been able to do business in the UK for nearly 20 years, and purchasing the development of Central St. Giles will lead to growth and success in the UK. It reflects the ongoing efforts of the company. “
Google will be the landlord of existing businesses in Central Saint Giles, including NBC Universal. Google said it expects the tenants to remain unchanged as a result of the purchase.
The campus in King’s Cross, at a similar cost, started construction in 2017, but has no completion date.
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