Rising office rents could force MEP firms to move

Rising office rents in Dubai may lead to MEP companies operating from outside the city in order to cut costs, reports an industry expert.

Rising office rents in Dubai may lead to MEP companies operating from outside the city in order to cut costs, reports an industry expert.

Research by CB Richard Ellis has revealed that over the past year rents for commercial property have risen by 30.7% and director of CKR Consulting Mark Conn said MEP firms could move as a result: “Fewer companies will ultimately survive working in the city and those that do will demand higher fees for their services.�

Cansult Maunsell senior vice president of operations Lorne Proudlock also believed that it is a possibility that companies could move: “Some businesses may choose to move all or part of their operations to a cheaper area, maybe another emirate where the cost of space is less but that�s got its own problems I suspect.�

Proudlock said some of the problems encountered with this solution would be the distance between a business and its clients and moving an entire workforce to a new location. However Drake & Scull strategic planning director Qais Saleh believed firms will move for the good of their staff: “MEP companies would move out of the city not to save money but to find the space they need to accommodate all of their staff. The office space is significantly larger than the compact spaces the city offers and thus more staff-friendly.�

Otis director of business development Yusef Shalabi revealed that companies are facing eviction from their current offices because landlords want to redevelop buildings.

Shalabi said: “Recently we got a notice in our Abu Dhabi office to get out. So after having spent US $54,000 (AED200,000) refurbishing we have six months to get out. We have been looking into finding another office and there isn�t any. Eventually we will find somewhere where we will have to pay three or four times what we are paying today.�

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