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Law firms lease almost 300,000 m² office space in Europe
4 Jun, 2007, Frankfurt
Last year, European law firms leased 229,940 m² of office space, representing an increase of almost a quarter (22%) on the previous year (246,365 m²). These were the findings of the most recent "Legal Business Briefing" study by international real estate consultancy organisation Cushman & Wakefield (C&W). As Robert Menke, director of C&W’s office space leasing department in Germany, explains: "Although lease volumes in the first two quarters showed a small decrease, the legal industry leased a total of 19% more office space throughout Europe in 2006. This can primarily be attributed to the favourable market conditions in the European capitals where law firms have been consolidating their office space. London, Paris, Amsterdam, Frankfurt and Brussels are the most sought-after locations by legal professionals. These five locations accounted for 83% (251,407 m²) of all office space leased by law firms in Europe – 6% more than in the previous year."
In 2006, law firms were most active in London where legal advisors leased 109,362 m² of
office space, 61% more than in the previous year (68,028 m²). A total of 10.5% of the
office space in London was leased by the legal profession, compared to 7.6% in Amsterdam and
5.9% in Lisbon. In other European cities, the share of lease volumes accounted for by law firms
was slightly above 2%.
Blue chip locations in sights for expansion
At 24,050 m², law firms in the German economic hub of Frankfurt leased 37% less office space last year than in 2005. C&W attributes this to law firms showing a particular interest in blue chip locations. As a result, further expansion often takes place away from the German financial metropolises in locations such as Munich. The largest lease recorded in Frankfurt (4,200 m²) was by the law firm Bieten Burkhardt in the Westhafen-Tower at Westhafenplatz 1.
Largest recorded lease of 22,000 m² in Amsterdam
The largest transactions during the previous year took place in Amsterdam, London and Brussels. The company De Brauw Blackstone Westbroek leased 22,000 m² of office space on Claude Desbussylaan in Amsterdam. In total, 95% more office space was leased by law firms in Amsterdam than in 2005.
In London, Eversheds leased 15,329 m² in Wood Street and was followed in the rankings by Stibbe, which leased 8,500 m² on the Place Cardinal Mercier in Brussels.
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