Thu, 09/08/2016 - 11:18

Excellent offers, active demand and stable rents define the office property market in 2016

We all know that Google's beginnings (and not only Google's) are in a simple garage. But even the most innovative and perspective company needs proper office that will provide it with all the comforts for its stable growth: excellent location, modern communications and amenities, security, space and opportunities for relaxation for the employees.

In the past few years, Sofia is experiencing the construction of offices types A and B, and zones of concentration formed, like the ones along boulevards Tsarigradsko Shose, Cherni Vrah and Balgaria, and in and around Business Park Sofia. As a result, the office property market in Bulgaria is going through a stable trend towards decrease of free spaces. According to a recent survey by MBL|CBRE, in the second trimester of 2016 only 12 percent of the available spaces were free.

Rents are at stable levels. The average rents for class A offices are 11-14 euro/sq.m, and for class B are 6.5-8.5 euro/sq.m. The trend will probably won't last for long: with increased demand and still lagging supply, the prices are likely to go up.

In the past few years, Sofia's Tsarigradsko Shose boulevard had become a preferred location for developing companies due to its easy access to important places like the city centre and Sofia Airport by car or public transport. Ellipse Center stands out among the administrative buildings in the area with its extravagant appearance. Ellipse Center is the first project of Tabet Group in Eastern Europe and combines recognisable shape, elegant design, comfort and style on approximately 13,000 sq.m leasable area. Each floor offers flexible allocation and partition and for companies with non-standard requirements are spaces with floor-to-ceiling height of 5.8 m. There are 134 underground parking lots and 20 ones for guests.

Ellipse Center meets the highest requirements for a class A office building and energy efficiency. That includes a central management system; 16 cm raised floor; 4 modern elevators; 2 staircases; 24/7 reception; CCTV and access control; UPS; HVAC Daikin; backup diesel generator; individual temperature control. The cutting-edge work environment provides as well recreation. The two terraces, at the restaurant and the top floor, offer magnificent view to Vitosha Mountain and the city. The project includes refreshing green areas and fitness and recreational zones.

The updated Ellipse Center is planned to open in the second half of 2017.

When you are looking for a convenient location for your business, along with all that you need to work smoothly, try the offers of АТМ Business Centre (Sofia, 131 Tsarigradsko Shose Blvd, phone: 0889 209 556; www.atmcentre.eu). In it, you will find 8,000 sq.m of office spaces and amenities like air conditioning, Internet, phone and security system. АТМ Business Centre is only 6 km away from the centre of Sofia and is close to Tsarigradsko Shose metro station. The centre has also a medical centre, bank, ATM machine, restaurant, a hotel with an outdoor swimming pool with a terrace bar, conference halls. For clients who arrive in the capital with their own car, but plan to take a plane from the Sofia Airport, АТМ offers parking and transfer to and from the airport. The outdoor parking has 140 places, and the covered one can accommodate 50 more cars. You can also take advantage of the car wash.

When we discuss office and commercial properties, however, we shouldn't forget small business properties up to 150 sq.m in size. According to Atanas Atanasov, manager of the Oborishte office of the Imoteka real estate agency, the segment follows its own trends and logic. In shops the demand for commercial spaces for pharmacies, fashion, cafes in central Sofia, Lozenets and the big neighbourhoods is significant. "That is why when merchants find a proper space on a good price, they tend to stay for long," Atanas Atanasov says. "But some of the landlords tend to make a crucial mistake: when they see that the business of their tenant is going well, they increase the rent. Often, the tenant cannot meet the new rent, and leaves." In offices, the most common case is connected with parking spaces: they are a necessity for clients, and landlords cannot often provide them," comments the Imoteka expert. The rates of small office properties are in the range of 5 and 7 euro/sq.m, but shops are more expensive: a commercial area of 20-40 sq.m at a good location is about 800-1,000 euro per month. "As a whole, the market of small business properties is active. The interest is significant and with an increase in the supply the potential of the segment will develop further," sums up Atanas Atanasov.

Issue 119-120

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