Henderson lures AEW to Spring Gardens

Manchester-based architect AEW is to relocate from Century Buildings in St Mary's Parsonage to the Zenith Building.

AEW will move into 6,907 sq ft on the first floor in October, having signed a 10-year lease with a five-year break.

Steve Burne, managing director of AEW, said: "Our business is all about our staff, and they are absolutely delighted with the space and the location. We have a fantastic workforce and this exciting move gives us improved efficiencies and the environment to continue to deliver the best service. The move comes in a year in which we have established our BIM capability and which has seen significant commissions in our key sectors of retail, industrial, student accommodation, masterplanning, hotels and sport.

"We appointed Alex Russell of CBRE to acquire our new office and after an extensive search of Manchester's grade A office market, the team concluded that The Zenith Building best met our search criteria, based on location, price and quality. The close proximity to amenities and transport links coupled with the landlord, Henderson Global Investors' proactive approach, were also deciding factors."

Henderson Global Investors bought the 66,000 sq ft office building from Bill Wrather in July 2011 and slashed rents by more than 50%. The historic quoting rent of £28.50/sq ft was reduced to between £12.50/sq ft for the mezzanine over the ground floor up to £23.50/sq ft on second, third and fourth floors.

Marcus Langlands Pearse, director of UK property at Henderson Global Investors in London, said at the time of the acquisition the building would be fully let by the start of 2012. There is currently 29,000 sq ft remaining to let across seven of the 13 floors.

Langlands Pearse said: "Our letting strategy is proving to be a success allowing us to offer this high-quality space at a competitive price and is attracting the right occupiers. We have a great tenant mix within the building and I am confident that the building's location and prominence will complement AEW's growth plans and high calibre client base."

Existing tenants include Octapharma, Cushman & Wakefield, Overbury, Robert Half International and Ace Europe.

CBRE advised AEW Architects and OBI Property and Knight Frank advised the landlord.

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Glad my pension isn’t with Henderson.

By Gladys Pugh