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Business services centres continue to lease office space outside Warsaw

2013 was another year of growth in the business services sector, enhancing its position as a key driver of the development of Poland’s office market. Foreign-capital companies from the business services sector leased more than 220,000 sqm of office space in 2013 in Poland. About 200,000 sqm of this was leased outside Warsaw.

Anna Młyniec, Head of Office Agency and Tenant Representation, JLL, said: “JLL’s analyses show that in 2013 business services sector companies leased around 200,000 sqm of office space outside Warsaw, which is, when the capital city is excluded, about 50 percent of Poland’s total office space demand. If we take Warsaw into consideration, the business services sector companies’ share in 2013’s total office space demand was about 20 percent.”

It can be assumed that the total office space volume occupied by foreign-capital business services companies operating in Poland, is around 1.2 million sqm.

In the past few years, Poland has become the CEE leader in terms of business services sector employment and has emerged as one of the sector’s key global destinations.

Jacek Levernes, President of ABSL, Member of Executive Management Board HP Europe, commented: “Over 120,000 specialists work in foreign-capital business services centers operating in Poland which translates into a 20 percent increase year-on-year. This means that the most optimistic scenarios forecast by ABSL have come true.”

The business services sector continues to be among the fastest developing branches of the Polish economy. According to ABSL forecasts, growth is set to continue with business services centres generating between 15- 20,000 new vacancies per year, hitting 150,000 by 2016. To fulfill the growing employment requirements, the business services sector searches for new locations in Poland which will be able to provide it with access to a wide HR pool. This is why such companies have become one of the main drivers of office market demand, both in larger markets (excluding Warsaw ) – Krakow, Wroclaw, Poznan, Katowice, Tri-City, Łódź, Lublin, Szczecin, as well as in smaller cities.

Exemplary lease agreements signed by companies from the business services sector in 2013 included: IBM Global Services Delivery Polska (12,000 sqm, Katowice), Lufthansa Airline Accounting Center (8,500 sqm, Krakow), ING Services Polska (total about 7,300 sqm, Katowice) and Cisco (7,000 sqm, Krakow).

Mateusz Polkowski, Associate Director, Research and Consultancy, JLL, added: “Almost from the very start of sector’s establishment in Poland, business services centres have been and continue to be key tenants of office space outside Warsaw. This kind of lease agreements typically concern a large volume of space, comparable to the space occupied by the largest financial and telecommunication companies. The process started with pivotal contracts – signed several years ago by, e.g., HP and Credit Suisse in Wroclaw, Shell and State Street in Krakow and by Infosys in Łódź. After these transactions the business services sector started to be perceived as a key office space tenant outside Warsaw. Today, companies from the business services sector occupy around 50 percent of the total office space volume in Krakow, 36 percent in Łódź and 35 percent in Wroclaw.”

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