Search and acquisition case studies
With over 20 years’ experience in the commercial property sector, our search and acquisition team has established unrivalled market knowledge. Committed to finding office space and achieving the best possible terms, we secure best value transactions and achieve significant savings on your occupational costs.
Caterpillar Financial Services – Friars Gate
Location: Friars Gate, Solihull
Client: Caterpillar Financial Services
Size: 13,800 sq ft
Having worked previously with Caterpillar Financial Services on finding and securing their former occupancy at The Phoenix Building on Blythe Valley Business Park, Caterpillar recently instructed KWB and its fit-out consultancy arm, KWB Workplace, to address their latest property requirements due to expiry of their lease.
Initially, KWB conducted negotiations to secure new terms at their existing Phoenix Building location. However, it proved not possible to reach an agreement that suited both landlord and occupier. At this point, we set about finding office space and identifying a shortlist of properties, working alongside KWB Workplace and the client to give best consideration to the fit-out and logistics of potential new premises.
Through this process, it was agreed that Friars Gate offered Caterpillar the best possible option, particularly as it meant that Caterpillar could remain in Solihull and benefit from its excellent transport links.
KWB successfully negotiated a 10-year lease on behalf of Caterpillar for 13,800 sq ft – at a rent of £17.50 per sq ft. The negotiation also included the landlord upgrading the M&E specification to Caterpillar’s particular requirements, thus reducing our client’s overall fit-out expenditure. In occupying Friars Gate, Caterpillar Financial Services – part of construction and mining equipment manufacturer, Caterpillar – joined prominent occupiers including Bank of Ireland, Thyssen Krupp and SAI Automotive.
USN – Seven House
Location: Seven House, Longbridge
Size: 6,300 sq ft
KWB was instructed by sports nutrition product company, USN, to find a new office location for the business. Their offices, at the time, were at Avon House in Redditch which, due to the fast growth of the company, could no longer house the office team or allow for future growth.
As official sports supplement partner of England Rugby League, USN provides the England team with some of the world’s most cutting-edge sports nutrition and bodybuilding products.
Having assessed the offices available close by, it became apparent that supply in the Redditch office market did not have a property suitable to offer USN, so we began to look further afield. We identified several potential properties and, after reviewing the shortlist with the client, Seven House in Longbridge was decided upon.
Seven House provided a floorplate that met USN’s current and planned future size requirements, and their vision for the workspace layout. It also offered the opportunity for future expansion within the building.
Longbridge has excellent communication links, making it easy for staff to commute to work. It has great access by road and train to Birmingham city centre, and easy access to the motorway network for visiting clients.
KWB Workplace, KWB’s office design and relocation consultancy, also provided move management and fit-out services for USN, creating a wholly unique office set-up that included a gym, serving as one of the breakout areas.
Jason Oakley, USN’s Managing Director, said: “We’re really happy with our new offices. We needed more space to accommodate our expansion and we now have workspace purpose-built for our needs. Longbridge is a great location for us. The transport links, growing amenities and hotels make it not only ideal for our staff, but for visiting clients, our sales team and European team members too.”
ArcelorMittal - FORE
Location: FORE, Solihull
Size: 8,900 sq ft
ArcelorMittal instructed KWB on finding office space close to its existing offices in Solihull town centre. The client was seeking more appropriate space whilst still retaining the excellent communication links that the area offered to the rest of the country.
ArcelorMittal operates in 60 countries and employs approximately 260,000 people worldwide. It is the leading supplier of high quality steel products in major markets such as automotive, construction, household appliances and packaging. Guided by a philosophy to produce safe, sustainable steel, they strive constantly to develop cleaner steelmaking processes and bring about industry-wide improvements in sustainability, with a deep commitment to protecting and improving the environment in which they work and live.
The driving forces behind ArcelorMittal’s relocation were twofold:
- To achieve greater occupational density and derive improved occupational efficiency
- To occupy ‘greener’, more sustainable office space to minimise environmental impact and provide significant energy efficiency and utility savings
KWB conducted an exhaustive search of available offices in Solihull and the M42 corridor that could offer the square footage required. Out of a list of potential new office premises, KWB shortlisted FORE as the one which best achieved the priorities of space efficiency, green credentials and energy efficiency.
FORE enabled an occupational density of 1:86 sq ft, 20% more efficient than other competing buildings in the area. FORE provided the only office buildings in the M42 corridor to be rated BREEAM ‘Excellent’ and have an EPC rating of ‘B’ – their score performed better than the benchmark for new office buildings. In addition, FORE’s M&E specification was significantly more efficient than other office buildings within the area, thus minimising occupational running costs.
KWB negotiated on behalf of ArcelorMittal to secure the top floor of FORE 2, a letting of 8,900 sq ft.
35 Newhall Street
Location: Birmingham city centre
Client: Mott MacDonald
Size: 19,000 sq ft
KWB relocated Mott MacDonald, a global management, engineering and development consultancy, into 19,000 sq ft of Grade ‘A’ office space within the newly refurbished and extensively remodelled 35 Newhall Street.
The space is located on the corner of Newhall Street and Edmund Street in the heart of Birmingham’s business district, and provides outstanding Grade ‘A’ office space options, a perfect solution for Mott MacDonald, one of the world’s largest employee-owned companies with over 14,000 staff, and offices in nearly 50 countries and projects in 140.
To the added value of the comprehensive refurbishment, 35 Newhall Street is also in a great location in Birmingham city centre, within easy walking distance of both New Street and Snow Hill stations and with a convenient connection to the national motorway network via the A38M.
Mott MacDonald was just the last of the list of professional and financial services companies in the building including Kennedys Solicitors, Three Lions Underwriting, Zolfo Cooper, MCR, Aldermore Bank and Capsticks Solicitors, to join the fantastic property.
KWB provided specialist advice regarding space planning and fit-out, achieved a cost neutral move and provided a complete move management service as testified by Ashley Taylor, Director of Mott MacDonald: “The refurbished interior and additional new build elements really make 35 Newhall Street stand out as a genuinely impressive Grade ‘A’ office building that has a real synergy with our ethos as a company.
Green Room - Assay Studios
Location: Assay Studios, Birmingham
Client: Green Room
Size: 5,961 sq ft
KWB was instructed by retail design agency, Green Room, on finding office space in Birmingham city centre, which would allow them to relocate from their existing offices at Fort Dunlop.
Green Room is an award-winning retail store design and brand consultancy with offices in Birmingham, London and Amsterdam and adds itself to a series of successful businesses located in the building as well as in this innovative area. Working with global brands, it creates experiential and interactive in-store displays to engage customers through visionary brand and customer experiences.
Having considered a range of office premises within Birmingham city centre, Assay Studios offered our client unique space in a prime location. KWB negotiated the lease for Green Room of 5,961 sq ft on the first floor of Assay Studios.
Set in the historic Jewellery Quarter – an aspiring location for design and technology based businesses – Assay Studios comprises 33,000 sq ft of office space, rich in cultural and commercial heritage. The building in Newhall Street has undergone a wholesale revamp to be reborn as Assay Studios after being for the best part of 150 years part of Birmingham’s industrial background.
The property is aimed squarely at Birmingham’s creative and tech companies, with the purpose of combining the traditional elements of the 1870s building with contemporary features. Among its clients, it had already signed up John Lewis as one of its first tenants as the company had taken space for its outstanding innovation hub in Birmingham, which will work on new technologies and ways of working, complementing its flagship store in Grand Central.
Other occupiers included the Birmingham office of global PR and communications agency Grayling, food delivery app Deliveroo, media and digital recruitment firms Emerald Technology and We Are Aspire.