The website for comparing personal finance products has scaled back its office requirement for a first Manchester base but remains committed to establishing a digital development centre in the city.
Moneysupermarket’s search started last year with an 80,000 sq ft requirement for an office in either Liverpool or Manchester. That became a search for 20,000 sq ft to 30,000 sq ft in Manchester. The latest understanding among agents is that the website operator is looking for between 6,000 sq ft and 8,000 sq ft. The company’s representatives have viewed prime suites in Spinningfields and other top-of-the-market sites, and are willing to pay rents of around £30/sq ft.
People familiar with the company said the reason for the changes to the search was that a decision had been made to retain the 400-strong Ewloe head office in North Wales and focus the Manchester office towards mobile and website product development. As the company expands, external suppliers of technical advice may give way to in-house teams. Manchester is seen as giving the company the best chance of recruiting and retaining staff with the necessary digital skills and experience.
Publicly listed Moneysupermarket is valued at £1.7bn and operates three brands; MoneySupermarket, TravelSupermarket and MoneySavingExpert.
The company has an office in Soho, London.
GL Hearn is advising Moneysupermarket.
All parties declined to comment.