Covid forces office space providers to ramp up service quality at competitive rates

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February 12, 2021 1:45 AM

Prestige partners Awfis to offer flexible office space solutions

At present, the flex space solutions provider has 75 centres and 40,000 seats across 11 cities.At present, the flex space solutions provider has 75 centres and 40,000 seats across 11 cities. (Representative image)

Prestige on Thursday said it will partner with workspace solutions platform, Awfis to provide flexible office spaces across six of its properties in Bangalore, Chennai and Hyderabad.

The development comes at a time when real estate developers are experimenting with new business models, as Covid compelled companies to opt for smaller offices and work from home (WFH). This also highlights the move by large players to explore giving offices on lease to SMEs and mid-sized corporates.

Awfis will offer over 2 lakh sq ft of Grade-A flex office spaces within Prestige Group’s premium commercial properties in Bangalore, Chennai, and Hyderabad covering a total capacity of more than 4,000 seats. Of the six centres, four are in Bangalore and one each in Chennai and Hyderabad. Both the companies also have plans to expand the service in west and north India, where Prestige has expansion plans.

“This perfectly combines both the company’s efforts to cater to the growing demand for co-working spaces amongst not just startups and SMEs but, also mid and large-sized corporations, looking to decentralise their workplaces, amidst the new normal,” Prestige Group said.

On rationale behind the partnership, Prestige Office Ventures CEO Juggy Marwaha told FE that it is an evolution of the way world has changed.

“We are seeing vacancy levels go up, and we are also seeing demand that is there but is potentially subdued as people cannot travel and clients are not coming into offices. There is status quo. We being a progressive developer have understood needs of the client and that going forward capex would not be so easy for clients to spend. This is perfect where developer puts in money, the operator puts in money. It’s problem solving,” he added.
The partnership allows Prestige to expand its client base by tapping SMEs and mid-sized companies and enhancing service offerings to clients, while allowing Awfis access to premium properties.

At present, the flex space solutions provider has 75 centres and 40,000 seats across 11 cities.

“It allows us to operate in Grade-A properties and have the ability to offer options for even smaller sizes as well because Prestige typically looks at 25,000 sq ft to a million sq ft tenants. What Awfis will bring in for that same property is the ability for somebody to even take 25-50 seats. So it upgrades a mid-sized corporate and gets them the ability to get into a Grade-A property and, obviously come into a flex space model,” explained Awfis founder & CEO Amit Ramani.

Ramani said they are witnessing an evolving trend of large corporates and MNCs experimenting with a hybrid workspace models and a growing preference for the distributed workspace concept.

“What we also foresee is that currently the partnership will start with 6 properties, but we want to continue and be able to expand as Prestige expands in north and west (India). We are investing equal amounts of capital. There is a minimum guarantee, but clearly there is a revenue sharing model,” he added.

Marwah said the partnership offers clients more hygiene and state-of-the-art buildings. “I think more than the service or type of asset, the offering in terms of experience in office buildings will change like destination-controlled elevator, socially distanced lobbies, clean air supply, etc. Those are the things that are happening in buildings of the future,” he added.

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