Cushman & Wakefield has been appointed by MMA Holdings as joint agent on 101 Embankment, where 106,000 sq ft remains to be let.
The 165,000 sq ft office at Cathedral Approach, on the Salford bank of the River Irwell, was taken in its entirety by Swinton Insurance in October 2016, with the business originally intending to move 1,000-plus staff to the premises. Following much industry rumour about its future, Swinton was bought by Ardonagh Group, which also owns Towergate, from previous parent company Covéa Group in November 2018 for £165m. A rationalisation programme then began.
Swinton now occupies 59,903 sq ft from the ground up to third floor, leaving floors four to nine available, totalling 105,794 sq ft. Some of this space was previously occupied by Swinton, some has never been used.
Place North West understands that, with different lease arrangements being in place for each floor, once Ardonagh completed its takeover it only took on the floors it believed Swinton would need, leaving Covéa, acting through associated business MMA, with the remainder.
Toby Nield, associate in Cushman & Wakefield’s office agency team, said of the instruction: “101 Embankment has a major presence in Manchester city centre. The current supply of existing grade A stock has reached an all-time low with just 170,000 sq ft immediately available. The accommodation at 101 Embankment offers occupiers an immediately available high-quality solution in a market facing a severe shortage of quality office supply.”
C&W, which will work alongside incumbent agent Colliers International on leasing at the building, is also engaged as joint agent on the neighbouring 100 Embankment, along with CBRE. Contractor Bam is on site with the £65m, 166,000 sq ft building on behalf of developer Ask.
With some large requirements said to be circling the Manchester market, it has been suggested that space across the two buildings could be pitched to the very largest. While 100 Embankment is due for completion by summer 2020, 101 could come into play for those needing space more urgently. One agent told Place: “They should be able to be more flexible here, offering two or three year options and working at a different price point to the 100 building.”