A COMMERCIAL property consultancy in Hampshire has topped the annual league for office space deals along the M27.
It is the second year in a row that Hughes Ellard, an independent employing 20 staff, has taken the honours ahead of nine other agencies in the closely-watched table.
Figures released by Estates Gazette, the commercial property ‘bible’, showed that just under 633,000sq ft was disposed of across the M27, up one per cent on the previous year.
Of that, Hughes Ellard, which has offices in Fareham and Southampton, accounted for nearly one third of all office space sold or leased.
The firm, established more than 40 years ago, recorded an increase in disposals to 49, from 40.
Two involved a total of 90,650sq ft – the 23,650sq ft letting to regional law firm Trethowans at The Pavilion, Botleigh Grange, near Hedge End, and the 67,000sq ft freehold sale of the Connect Centre, just off the M275 at Portsmouth.
Russell Mogridge, head of transactional at Hughes Ellard, said: ‘Whilst both those deals were of importance, they did not skew the figures because our other 47 disposals still placed us at the top of the leader board by square footage.
‘It is testament to our team, from the surveyors to back-office staff, that companies and organisations choose us to find them the best locations at the right prices.
‘Estate Gazette’s figures are of relevance to many businesses along the commerce-rich M27 because they show what appetite there is for office space.
‘What is clear, now that the economic recovery has traction, is that the days of companies looking for cheap space is over.’
In total, Hughes Ellard disposed of 272,360sq ft in 49 deals.
According to Estates Gazette, the average office size deal along the M27 was 2,693sq ft, down from 3,394sq ft, indicating that occupiers are taking smaller premises.
Its figures are based on data from September 2013 to August 2014.