Professional services firm brings 700 jobs to Birmingham after agreeing lease on new headquarters

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A leading engineering professional services consultancy is bringing 700 jobs to Birmingham after agreeing terms on a 47,000 sq ft of office space at one of the city’s most high profile locations.

WSP is consolidating several of its regional operations at the Grade A space in The Mailbox, with the new facility serving as its West Midlands headquarters.

It has agreed an option to increase the amount of space by a further 8,000 sq ft.

The deal mirrors that agreed by software group Advanced, which took out 45,000 sq ft of space at the Mailbox in 2015, creating 400 jobs.

WSP, which employs 7,640 people across the UK, provides technical expertise and strategic advice across a broad range of sectors including real estate, infrastructure, transport, healthcare, and energy. In Birmingham, WSP has been involved in some of the most significant redevelopments in the city, including 212 Broad Street, the Radisson Blu Hotel, Snowhill 3, Grand Central, and the Bullring.

Matthew Wherry, Head of Corporate Real Estate at WSP, said: “The Mailbox provides an exciting opportunity for us to create a great workspace for our employees. Its central location, superb local amenities and unique canalside setting, all serve to enhance our ability to recruit and retain the best people and continue to support our many clients in the Midlands region.”

Alex Wright, Associate Partner at Brockton Capital, said: “We are delighted WSP has chosen the Mailbox as its new regional headquarters for the West Midlands. The combination of strong location; high quality, big volume, flexible space; and a 24/7 mixed use environment offering some of Birmingham’s best dining, retail and leisure offerings right on the doorstep, all contribute to make the Mailbox a unique and vibrant workplace setting.”

The floorspace at the Mailbox is currently undergoing extensive refurbishment. On completion, the offices will benefit from enhanced sustainability features, exposed services, an abundance of natural light, canal views, a dedicated entrance lobby, and direct access to car and bike parking, in addition to access to the broader Mailbox estate.

The WSP pre-let marks a continuation of large commitments to the city and the broader region by major businesses including HSBC, PwC, Deutsche Bank, Jaguar Land Rover, HS2, HMRC and Advanced.

Ashley Hancox, of CBRE, joint office leasing agent for the Mailbox, said: “This pre-let to WSP marks another significant achievement for Birmingham, which has enjoyed a record 2017, seeing take-up exceed 1 million sq ft.

“Together with its central location, landmark status, range of uses and 24/7 environment, the Mailbox is perfectly positioned to help market-leading occupiers attract and retain the best talent and improve productivity and wellbeing amongst staff. It is this combination of key factors that explains why the office space at the Mailbox is now 100% spoken for by occupiers of the quality of WSP, the BBC, Advanced and Associated Architects.”

Fraser Brown and Knight Frank acted for WSP; The Mailbox was advised by CMS Cameron McKenna Nabarro Olswang, with CBRE and Savills as joint leasing agents.

An office floorplate at The Mailbox