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April 2014


move CommerCial The north-west’s guide to property and business

Issue 36

Making the grade Spotlight on top quality office space

Cannes Do on camera Picture special from this year’s event


only 1 solution No1 TITHEBARN

Remodelled contemporary offices in the number 1 location in Liverpool’s New Business District


TO LET 3,000 sq ft - 50,000 sq ft (279 sq m - 4,745 sq m)

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p01-16_Move Commercial 31/03/2014 14:14 Page 4

Downing Flexi-Offices


THE OFFICE SPACE YOU NEED, FOR AS LONG AS YOU NEED IT, AT AN IRRESISTIBLE INCLUSIVE RENT. From one person, from one month – just tell us what you want…


Issue thirty-six Move Commercial

Contents News 06 A brief look at the region’s latest 07 Peel development fully let 08 Demand rising at No 1 Tithebarn 09 Topping out at HOME 10 City centre offices rebranded and refurbished 12 Eco offices attract interest 13 ‘Together’ welcomes first tenant 14 ODEON set for Old Town Hall 15 New Hope Street café plan 16 Vivark progresses apprentice pledge 21 Funding chance for North West firms



Welcome to Move Commercial As we bring you the latest from the North West’s commercial property and business sectors once again, we have big news of our own to announce. Move Commercial will now bring you the usual dose of industry analysis, debate, event coverage, developments and big business names more often, as we become a monthly publication. So with that in mind, what better time to launch some

fantastic new features too. Along with all your favourites, in this new issue we catch up with ISG Construction’s managing director, Alan McCarthy-Wyper for a lunch date, and The North West Fund shares its secrets to success. Plus we look at how one of the region’s biggest construction schemes, the new Royal Liverpool University Hospital, is shaping up over time.


36 move publishing ltd Advertising Director Fiona Barnet. Tel: 0151 709 3871 Advertising Manager Catherine McCarthy. Tel: 0151 709 3871 Editor Christine Toner. Tel: 0151 709 3871 Editorial Team Natasha Young and Stephen Hurrell. Tel: 0151 709 3871

46 Design The Design Foundry. Email: Published by Move Publishing Ltd Directors David O’Brien, Kim O’Brien, Fiona Barnet Printed by Precision Colour Printers Ltd Distribution Liaison Manager Barbara Troughton Tel: 0151 733 5492 Mobile: 077148 14662 Credits: Peter Kelly – Lunch Debate, Lunch Date Tom Murphy – Entrepreneur Robin Clewley – Cannes Do


Copyright Move Publishing Limited. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced copied or transmitted in any form or by any means or stored in any information storage or retrieval system without the publishers written permission. Although every effort is made to ensure the accuracy and reliability of material published, Move Publishing can accept no responsibility for the veracity of the claims made by advertisers.

18 Bitesize thinking Food for thought 20 Appointments Who’s moving where? 22 Industrial Expansion The North West’s industrial success story 28 Entrepreneur Phil Piercy of Clearground talks commercial cleaning 32 Cannes Do All the pictures from the Cannes Do at Exchange Station 36 Lunch debate Grade A office space in Manchester 42 Mover and shaker Andrea George of Allied London on Spinningfields and beyond 46 Lunch date ISG’s managing director Alan McCarthy-Wyper chats over lunch 47 Secrets of success The North West Fund reveals all 48 Key event Bruntwood launches Old Hall space 51 Business diary The region’s best events 52 MIPIM Reaction to the MIPIM event in Cannes 55 Ask the panel How has the budget affected commercial property?

Around the region News in brief M6




In this issue of Move Commercial we bring you all the latest commercial property and business news from around the North West, from the area’s biggest development projects to the top sales and lettings deals.




M6 M61



Plus our commercial, leisure, retail and finance sections keep you up to date on how the various industries are faring in our region, whilst our training page shines a spotlight on the opportunities being afforded to employers and apprentices.


















Full house at waterside offices

Welcome HOME at topping out ceremony

ODEON in major town hall deal

Grade II listed church up for auction

Prestigious offices in Princes Dock in Liverpool are fully let after just six months.

Manchester’s newest culture centre, HOME, celebrates its topping out ceremony

An ODEON and leisure complex will be built in a dramatic revamp of Oldham’s Old Town Hall

A church in Preston could fetch up to £300,000 when it goes under the hammer.

>> Read More on Page 7

>> Read More on Page 9

>> Read More on Page 14

>> Read More on Page 13

Latest News

Flexible dockside offices filled after six months fLexibLe offiCeS at the heart of Peel’s proposed £7bn Liverpool Waters scheme are fully let after six months, providing space for 2,500 employees. The offices at No 12 Princes Dock, known as The Quay, now house small businesses such as environmental start-up URoC and more established companies including chartered surveyors Dunlop Heywood in spaces ranging from 100 sq ft to 470 sq ft. The Quay is the first stage of Peel’s plans for the area, which includes more flexible office space scheduled to open in the summer. Sarah Syvret, business centre manager at The Quay, Princes Dock,

The Quay

says: “We have had a really successful past few months with The Quay and are delighted it has become fully occupied so quickly. The offering at The Quay is unique as all of our tenants benefit from great waterside views, a wide range of on-site amenities, free car parking and excellent flexible office packages.” The location of the Princes Dock building is at the heart of a £7bn mixed use scheme, given planning permission in 2013, to build office, residential, leisure and industrial space along Liverpool’s northern waterfront. for more information visit

Proposed Millennium House deal a ‘win win’, says Mayor Millennium House

PRoPoSALS To turn Liverpool’s Millennium House into a themed hotel and offices would provide a “win win” situation for the city, according to Mayor Joe Anderson. following the announcement that Liverpool City Council has acquired the Cunard building, and is set to relocate staff from Millennium House on Victoria Street and The Capital building on old Hall Street, cabinet members are now being asked to approve plans for the local authority to dispose of Millennium House to Signature Living Ltd. if given the go-ahead during a 4 April meeting, the deal will pave the way for Signature Living Hotel Ltd to submit plans for a bill Shanklythemed aparthotel and 17,500 sq ft of upgraded office space for the developer’s head office, as well as

local start-up firms. As part of the £15m scheme Lifestyles Gym, which operates from the building, would be expanded, refurbished and leased back to the council. With the council set to move to the Cunard building during the summer, the Mayor says: “We were keen to make sure that as we moved out, someone was moving in.” Speaking about the potential plans for Millennium House, he adds: “There’s an end use for Millennium House, that’s a win win.” The council’s acquisition of the Grade ii * listed waterfront site is part of a cost-saving scheme, and the local authority is also set to unveil plans for the downstairs of the building to be used for cruise and leisure uses this summer.



News Latest

No 1 Tithebarn

Liverpool bids for a share of £2bn investment pot

LIVERPOOL LOCAL ENTERPRISE Partnership has submitted local growth plans to secure a share of a £2bn government funding pot. Regions were invited to bid for a share of the Local Growth Fund and 39 LEPs have now submitted their plans to government. Liverpool will announce its full plan later this year but has outlined five key areas including projects in the city centre, access to the Port of Liverpool and the region’s freight and logistics hub. Other areas of the proposal include creating a low carbon region and an investment fund to co-invest in share capital schemes. Robert Hough, Liverpool City Region LEP chair, says: “Both the public and private sectors have identified what investment is needed in the city region to accelerate economic growth and create new jobs, so this growth plan outlines our shared vision. “The projects identified in the plan are crucial to the city region’s continued success especially the potential of the city centre, the development of a freight and logistics hub for the city region, and our ambitions to be a key centre for low carbon energy generation and development.” Manchester, Lancashire and Cheshire also submitted their bids before the 1 April deadline. Once the plans are published, the £2bn will be allocated and investment will begin in 2015.



Demand rising at No 1 Tithebarn DEMAND FOR Grade A office space at the newly-refurbished No 1 Tithebarn in Liverpool is growing as discussions take place with “a number of occupiers”’. Jolivet Group bought the building last Autumn for £5.35m in the biggest Liverpool office investment deal since 2011 and is now reporting growing interest in the building, according to the agent, CBRE. Mark Worthington of CBRE says:

“They have had positive feedback from all of the tenants since Jolivet purchased the building and are in active discussions with a number of occupiers looking at taking space within the building. The space is available at very competitive rates – below £10 per sq ft.” No 1 Tithebarn has been converted to Grade A office space and includes raised floors and air conditioning. Suite options ranging from 3,000 sq

ft to 50,000 sq ft are available. The 115,000 sq ft office building, located on the corner of Old Hall Street above Moorfields train station, is managed by Jolivet’s own property management arm, JPM Real Estate Management Ltd. It has recently introduced regular tenant meetings and, as a result, has now installed new bike racks and showers to encourage cycling to and from the office.

DUo of DeALS foR PRoPeRTy ALLiANCe GRoUP ACTioN SPoRTS brand Animal has taken 2,088 sq ft of space at fairbairn buildings in Manchester, after relocating from its previous base in Warrington. Animal, which produces clothing for extreme sports such as surfing, other board sports and skiing, has signed a 10-year lease at the 16,558 sq ft property on Sackville Street. it will join existing tenants including TATA Steel, Studio Lidell and Reid Architects in the building. The six-storey, 16,558 sq ft fairbairn buildings, which is owned by Property Alliance Group, now has just 2,800 sq ft of space remaining on the fourth floor. Alex Thomas, surveyor at Property Alliance Group, says:

Fairbairn Buildings

“This quirky building was an ideal match for the Animal brand. The company was looking for office space that offered something a bit different and fairbairn buildings was the ideal option. The building’s character and charm gives occupiers an impressive and inspiring work environment.” Property Alliance Group has also secured a new tenant at Merchant exchange in Whitworth Street, Manchester. Digital marketing agency Livelink has taken 4,000 sq ft on a five-year lease. Knight frank advised on the deal for the Grade A space and 1,757 sq ft of third floor office space now remains vacant in the building.

Development News

‘Topping out’ celebration at HOME development

Project partners mark the milestone stage

THE CONSTRUCTION of Manchester’s new £25m multi-artform complex, HOME, has achieved a huge milestone, as the development reached its highest point. Project partners Manchester City Council, Ask Property Developments and main contractor, Wates Construction, celebrated the

SeDDoN STARTS WoRK oN £5M CoLLeGe CAMPUS A £5M ReDeVeLoPMeNT of St Helens College’s Technology Campus is now underway, after Seddon Ltd was chosen to carry out the scheme. The Manchester-based construction company is now working on the first phase of the project, which kicked off in March and includes the remodelling of the existing animal care area. The scheme at the campus on Waterside in Pocket Nook follows on from a recent extensive

‘topping out’ at HOME, which is part of the wider £500m First Street regeneration. Due for completion in spring 2015, HOME merges the city’s cultural Cornerhouse and Library Theatre Company organisations. Designed by Dutch architects Mecanoo, the finished venue will

feature a 500-seat theatre; a 150seat flexible theatre; a 500 sq m, 4m high gallery space; five cinema screens, a cafe bar and restaurant. Tony Shenton, business unit director at Wates Construction North West, says: “Work to deliver this incredible cultural centre is progressing well and excitement is really starting to grow as the building begins to take shape. Once complete, HOME is set to become an iconic arts venue and we are delighted to celebrate this important milestone in its delivery as we move towards completion on time and on budget.” HOME is being funded by a £19m contribution by Manchester City Council, along with £5m of Arts Council England Lottery funding and the remainder from fundraising. A £250,000 contribution has already been made by the Garfield Weston Foundation.

How the redeveloped college campus will look

redevelopment at the college’s town centre site. The building, which hosts course subjects including engineering, construction and animal care, will be updated and upgraded during development, and students will benefit from facilities including new dog wash areas for the dog grooming courses, as well as a new dining area and internal courtyards, accessible outdoor spaces, an up-todate reception and a remodelled entrance piazza.

The campus will also be equipped with“high quality, flexible” learning spaces, a new library and the existing workshops and classrooms will be remodelled. Seddon operations manager, Mark Dawson, says: “We’re excited to have been chosen by St Helens College for this major redevelopment programme. our team has extensive expertise in the sector and will draw on this to deliver modern educational facilities built to the highest standards.”

Langtree buys central Liverpool site for regeneration

Langtree chief executive, John Downes

PROPERTY COMPANY Langtree has completed the purchase of the former Kingston House site on James Street in Liverpool city centre for an undisclosed sum. Langtree was named as the preferred developer for the site in 2007 but then owner the Home and Communities Agency (HCA) decided against continuing with the partnership at the time. The developer has now confirmed it has completed the deal for the land and will look at options to regenerate it. Original plans for a 100,000 sq ft office block on the site in 2007 will not be revived but Langtree says it will work with the city’s council to develop the site in the prime location overlooking The Strand. John Downes, chief executive at Langtree, says: “This is a very important step for the future of this location in the city’s business district and we will work closely with Liverpool City Council to create a building which reflects the new Liverpool we have all seen grow in the last decade. “In a city full of great buildings we want to seize this opportunity to develop something of which the city can be proud.”



News Commercial

Hitchcock Wright & Partners named region’s most active agent COMMERCIAL PROPERTY agent Hitchcock Wright & Partners has been given national recognition for its high level of activity. For the sixth time, national publication Estates Gazette has named the Liverpool-based firm the Most Active Agent in the North West in the office sector, based on the number of transactions completed between 1 January and 31 December. Recognition is given to the top five agencies in each category, plus an overall winner for each region, across 12 regions. Brian Ricketts, head of the office agency at Hitchcock Wright & Partners, which previously received the accolade from 2005-2009, says: “After a tough six or seven years or so it’s great to see all our hard work has finally paid off, and hopefully this will encourage further investment in the city from outside investors and existing developers and clients. “Like many of the provincial cities, the Liverpool office market has lay in the doldrums since the economic crash in late 2007, and has suffered with low levels of confidence and demand. However, the recently published findings by Professional Liverpool take up figures for 2013 appear to herald the re-emergence of some long awaited positive activity, and certain key take-up trends which are most encouraging. “For us, the award is a reflection of this improvement, and we are thrilled to be recognised.”

Brian Ricketts


Liverpool business centre rebrand revealed A LiVeRPooL serviced office provider and business development centre has completed a rebrand and refurbishment of part of its listed, city centre building. Hanover Serviced offices has changed its name to 82West and is targeting start-up companies and SMes at its two Liverpool addresses, which include Hanover House on Hanover Street and Trident House on Dale Street. The firm is offering start-up packages including a virtual office and a receptionist service, as well as a monthly newsletter. Start-ups also get a membership card with discounts for local leisure and other businesses. The listed buildings are owned by the family-owned business and refurbishment is now complete on the fifth floor reception area

The refurbished office

of Hanover House. The completion of work on the reception is the first stage of a wider refurbishment for both buildings. Laura Alt, marketing manager at 82West, says: “This is a project very close to my heart. We are offering small businesses the

chance to associate themselves with one of the most prestigious business addresses in the city and our new name, new brand and new website is about modernisation for the company.” for more information about 82West visit

Asking price falls at Tiger Court Tiger Court

THe PRiCe of offices at Tiger Court in Knowsley business Park have been cut to attract more owner-occupiers and investors, according to agent CbRe. A total of four office units are available at the site, which is located near junction two of the M57. The available units comprise 3,200 sq ft, two 4,000 sq ft and a 5,000 sq ft units, and the asking price has been lowered from £100 to £60 for the remaining units.

Neil Kirkham, associate director at CbRe, says: “We have just been instructed to reduce the asking price from £100 per sq ft to £60 per sq ft on the basis that we feel that this asking price is going to appeal to owner/investors and operators alike. This represents fantastic value and we are anticipating a number of enquiries as a consequence.” The Tiger Court offices are self-contained, detached two-storey

office buildings with full access raised floors, toilets on each floor and air conditioning, says CbRe, which is acting on behalf of PWC. Tiger Court is part of Knowsley business Park, whose tenants include first Ark, Knowsley PCT, balfour beatty and Johnson Cleaners. for more information and to see a 360-degree image of Tiger Court visit

p01-16_Move Commercial 31/03/2014 14:15 Page 11



In a city rich with architectural classics, India Buildings stands out as one of its best loved. Occupying an entire city-centre block, it provides unrivalled contemporary office accommodation to a mixed business community. Offices range from Grade A office and HQ space designed for large corporates, to smaller office suites designed for the dynamic SME community within its dedicated business centre – The Hub.







News Sales & Lettings

New eco offices attract interest A NEW LOW-CARBON Liverpool office development is almost half full, despite not yet being complete. Ullet Road Eco Offices, a disused medical practice now equipped with six offices ranging from 11 to 16 sq m in size, has already signed up two full tenants and part let a space specifically for businesses who only require the space for part of the week. John Garrett from the scheme says there has been “a lot of interest locally” in the new out of town property, which is due to be completed within weeks.

Mouchel renews lease at Exchange Station Ullet Road Eco Offices

Occupants will benefit from a shower and changing room, bike sheds, 32amp (fast charge) and 13amp (normal domestic) electric vehicle charge points, and a shared electric car which can be made available (given sufficient demand), for those needing the use of a vehicle during the day. John adds: “Located within the Sefton Park conservation area, most of the original features of the building have been retained, with the old lead lights encapsulated into triple glazing units designed for acoustic as well as

thermal insulation, and the ornamental brick finishes replaced over the insulation. “Its style, together with its integration with the natural world, with a green roof, bird nesting boxes, fruit trees trained around the perimeter walls and reinforced grass parking areas, marks this development out as somewhat different from most shared office facilities.” For more information about Ullet Road Eco Offices, log on to or email

Meridian Business Village

Space running out at Hunts Cross development A ToTAL of four commercial office units remain at the Meridian business Village in Hunts Cross, after owner Prospect Gb reported healthy lettings activity in recent months. Keppie Massie and Hitchcock Wright & Partners have been appointed as joint agents and offices ranging from 1,313 sq ft to 10,780 sq ft are available at the South Liverpool development, according to Prospect Gb. 12 MOVE COMMERCIAL

Head of Prospect Gb’s commercial division, Chris Walker, says: “The location is one of Meridian business Village’s key competitive strengths – it appeals to any type of company, from a small start-up business to a large corporation. The fast links to the city centre and close proximity to motorways provide strategic advantages, but the surroundings in the heart of a newly developed mixuse area, with numerous everyday

shopping options, also offer lifestyle quality and convenience.” Recent arrivals at Meridian business Village include mobile iD card technology company iD Card Ltd, epica Health and Safety and cloud technology business Screenik Technology, all of who all took 1,384 sq ft each at the site in 2013. for more information about Meridian business Village visit

BUSINESS SERVICES company Mouchel has renewed its lease at Liverpool’s Exchange Station for another 10 years following the £5m redevelopment of the concourse office space. Mouchel has signed with a fiveyear break on its current 24,000 sq ft space, having already been a tenant for a decade at the converted railway station. Emily Armstrong, asset manager for Exchange Station, says: “We are thrilled that Mouchel has renewed its lease for a further 10 years. The company is a great asset to the building and we are delighted that we could continue to accommodate their requirements.” According to Ian Gwynne, group property manager at Mouchel, the new development was a major factor in the firm’s decision to extend its lease. He says: “We are very pleased to have extended our lease at Exchange Station. We have seen a dramatic difference in the atmosphere within the building since the transformation of the concourse. The new meeting room facilities and coffee shop have in particular been great for both our employees and clients and we look forward to continuing to work in such a prestigious office building.” The £5m concourse redevelopment was completed by Space Northwest in 2013. For more information visit

Exchange Station

Sales & Lettings News

first tenant moves in at Together DiGiTAL MARKeTiNG AGeNCy SupaReal is the first company to move to bruntwood’s new co-working office space at 127 Portland Street, Manchester. The company has taken 2,200 sq ft of space at the building, which has been designed to accommodate freelancers and start-up businesses. As part of the move, Atul bansal from the Sheila bird Group provided interior design consultation for the flexible office space. ian Wilson, property marketing manager for bruntwood, says: “Since the launch, we’ve been overwhelmed by the positive response we’ve had. We are delighted to welcome SupaReal as the first business to join the co-


Frazer John moves into ‘unusual’ Manchester office RECRUITMENT CONSULTANT Frazer John has moved into a new 4,035 sq ft office at One New York Street in Manchester after a four-week refurbishment to get the space ready for its new tenant. The recruitment specialist has signed a two-year lease with building owner Invesco Real Estate after the 20-strong staff outgrew a smaller office on King Street. As part of the move, Frazer John appointed Sheila Bird

Group to design the Grade A space, which has a garden theme complete with grass, fencing, birds, verandas and outside viewing areas. David Seddon, associate for asset management in Europe at Invesco Real Estate, says: “We are delighted to welcome Frazer John and provide a base for what’s certainly one of Manchester’s more unusual offices. Since acquiring the site in 2012, we’ve invested in further improvements to the

Grade ii listed church to go under the hammer

City Church Preston

working suite and we have no doubt that given the hugely positive reception the space has had so far that we will be able to announce more signings very soon.” Together was launched earlier this year as a co-working office suite with the fastest internet connectivity of any co-working space in Manchester city centre, according to bruntwood. it works with iSP partner Metronet (UK) to install the 100Mbit per second connection in the offices. As well as office space from £195 plus VAT per desk, the site also offers access to meeting spaces, bike racks, lockers and unlimited tea and coffee. for more information on Together contact bruntwood on 0843 504 4759.

John Dyson, founder of Frazer John, in the new office

building, including enhancing the reception area, so have continued to attract and retain tenants.” OBI Property acted on behalf of Invesco Real Estate for the deal and CBRE is the joint agent for the remaining office space. A total of 14,970 sq ft is available at One New York Street, split between 5,785 sq ft on the third floor and 9,185 sq ft on the 11th floor.

A GRADe ii listed church in Preston is expected to fetch up to £300,000 when it goes up for auction in April. City Church Preston has a guide price of between £250,000 and £300,000 and could be developed for alternative uses subject to planning consents, according to auctioneer Sutton Kersh. The church, situated on North Road in Preston, is one of several commercial property lots up for auction on 9 April at the Liverpool city centre Marriott Hotel. it will be joined by a double-front mixed-use property on Moss Lane in orrell Park, which has a guide price of £60,000 to £70,000, in the commercial section of the auction.

A three-storey property on Park Road in Toxteth, which is pre-tenanted and has a ground floor retail unit producing an annual income of £5,280, will have a guide price of £75,000. Cathy Holt, auction manageress at Sutton Kersh, says: “Vendors have once again turned to our auction room to dispose of surplus stock quickly. The catalogue includes a wide variety of vacant and tenanted commercial properties, as well as numerous residential lots, at guide prices to suit all budgets.” The auction begins at 12 noon. for more information visit


News Leisure

ODEON cinema confirmed for Oldham’s Old Town Hall oLDHAM’S GRADe ii-LiSTeD old Town Hall will be converted into a seven-screen oDeoN cinema, after a deal was struck between the cinema chain and oldham Council. Work will begin in spring to convert the building into an 850seat cinema, six restaurants and a café. The development will also include a public square next to the venue, which will host arts and culture events. The exterior of the old Town Hall will be restored and retained in the renovation but a more modern ‘light box’ extension will be added to the front of the building in what

The ‘light box’ extension

the council has called a ‘sympathetic conservation’ of the building’s original external features. Announcing the deal Jim McMahon, oldham Council leader, says: “This is box office news for us in every respect – and a real coup for oldham. our vision has always been to restore the old Town Hall as a symbol of civic pride. Today is an important step and we can’t wait to get started on work with oDeoN to make this happen.” While work is completed a hoarding will be erected featuring photographs of local people and their memories of the old Town Hall, the council has announced.

Venture Fields, Widnes

Crabwall Manor Hotel

£1.5M HOTEL RENOVATION NEARS COMPLETION THE £1.5M RENOVATION of an historic Grade II-listed hotel in Chester will be completed in April, according to project coordinator Powell Williams. Crabwall Manor Hotel in Mollington, Chester, has been comprehensively updated with new furnishings in all 48 bedrooms, work to repair and restore the exterior of the building and updates to newer parts of the building to bring them in line with the Grade II-listed areas. The final stage of the project is an upgrade to the hotel’s four wedding and conference suites and interior work to make the most of the building’s main entrance during weddings at the venue. 14 MOVE COMMERCIAL

Andy Williams, Chester-based partner at Powell Williams, which lead the project, says: “The refurbishment of this beautiful hotel was done with the upmost sensitivity to the historic building. Having the building occupied during the work created challenges but we worked closely with the management to minimise the impact on the day-to-day operation of the business and deliver the programme on schedule.” Powell Williams coordinated the project, Magna Designs was appointed to complete the interior design and the chosen building contractor was Interfit Interiors.

Work begins on Widnes Waterfront scheme THe CoNSTRUCTioN of a new 18,000 sq ft gym has signalled the next phase of the 11-acre Venture fields waterfront scheme in Widnes A new leisure building will house a Pure Gym once construction is completed in September. it follows the construction of The Hive leisure complex, including a cinema, ice rink, restaurant and bowling alley, in 2012. Developer barwood Developments North and Halton borough Council have formed a joint venture to develop the scheme and are now seeking tenants for three other leisure plots ranging from 1,290 sq ft to 4,410 sq ft before building work

can begin on each. The new gym is the latest development at the mixed-use leisure, trade and industrial site, which includes an adjacent industrial development offering 84,497 sq ft of space on a let-to-build basis. Councillor Ron Hignett, Halton Council’s executive board member for physical environment, says: “i am pleased we are working with barwood and that this development is moving along well. Venture fields is an important site at Widnes Waterfront and i’m sure there will be a lot of interest in it as what is being offered is a great opportunity.”

Retail News

independent coffee chain plans Hope Street expansion

Moose Coffee’s Nick and Kathy van Breemen with Robin Ellis, Downing

INDEPENDENT CAFÉ chain Moose Coffee will open a new Liverpool outlet, after agreeing to lease 1,350 sq ft at Downing’s Federation House. The Hope Street venue will be the fourth Moose Coffee to open its doors, joining outlets in Liverpool city centre on Dale Street, as well as in Crosby and Manchester. Owners Nick and Kathy van Breeman say the new café will offer the same American brunch-style options as the existing venues with an emphasis on locally sourced, fresh food made on site. The unit is currently being used as a show flat for Downing’s major student development, the Electra, which is being built to the rear of Federation House. Once the development is completed in September the space will be refurbished and an outdoor eating area will be added in time for Moose Coffee’s planned opening in November. Robin Ellis from Downing says: “We’re delighted to be welcoming Moose Coffee to Federation House. Moose is a great business with an exciting future and it’s inspiring to see home-grown Liverpool businesses like this thriving and expanding.” Moose Coffee will join existing tenant Liverpool Media Academy, which let 17,500 sq ft across the top five floors from Downing last year.

Edward Pavilion

New eatery to launch at Edward Pavilion A bRAND new coffee shop is set to open up at Albert Dock’s edward Pavilion building, serving both the building’s occupants and waterfront visitors. Teddy’s Coffee bar will be located on the ground floor of the Grade i listed Liverpool site, which also offers commercial office space. The new food and beverage venue, which will be open Monday to

friday from 8am until 4.30pm when it launches in April, will aim to provide “high quality food and beverages at affordable prices”. it joins existing office space occupants Hampson Hughes Solicitors, Cassell Moore Solicitors and belvedere Schools Limited at edward Pavilion, which also has further space remaining for other business keen to locate at the

city’s waterfront. Ahead of the opening emma McConlough from Litus Properties, which owns the building and is behind the new Teddy’s Coffee bar venture, says: “Not only will this be hugely convenient for the existing workforce currently located at the edward Pavilion but it will also create greater choice for visitors to the Albert Dock.”

Chester retailers to discuss proposed BID RETAILERS ACROSS Chester city centre are being provided with more information about the benefits of becoming a Business Improvement District (BID), as a ballot is set to take place in June. At an event on April 8 at Chester Town Hall, the CH1 Chester BID Company will meet businesses in the area to discuss how the initiative could bring improvements. The BID company is made up of independent business owners to hoteliers and leisure operators. The team believes that becoming a BID, which would see businesses involved pay an additional 1% levy which would then be pooled for the BID to spend on improvements and initiatives, would help increase footfall and improve sustainability in the area. It is also suggested that becoming a BID would deliver a “healthier bottom line for all those whose livelihoods depend on the city centre”. The BID area in Chester includes more than 550 shops and businesses. The discussions will take place as part of a series of monthly events for Cheshire West & Chester Council’s One City Plan – a 15-year strategy to guide the future economic regeneration of Chester. For more information about the proposed BID for Chester, visit


News Training

Funding incentive for apprenticeship employers

A £3,000 INCENTIVE is being offered to employers who take on an apprentice, as part of a new Manchester City Council scheme. Those who hire a Manchesterbased apprentice aged 16-18 are being offered the cash boost, which comes from funding which is a legacy of the Future Jobs Fund set up by the previous government. Money was due to the council for the administration of the scheme being used to support further youth employment. Commenting on the local authority’s new initiative, Councillor Sue Murphy, deputy leader of Manchester City Council, says: “We’re proud to announce this incentive which will make it even more attractive for businesses to take on young people. It’s a real win-win scenario. “Apprenticeships are a practical and highly-rewarding recruitment option for businesses of all sectors and sizes, from global financial services companies to family-run small businesses. At the same time they help the young people to gain the skills and confidence which will stand them in good stead for their future careers. “I’d encourage employers who are considering taking on a young apprentice to make the most of this offer as soon as possible. When the funding is gone, it’s gone.” While the offer is not limited to Manchester companies, the apprentice must be a Manchester resident. The maximum number of grants which can be awarded per employer is two. For further information on apprenticeships and more details of this funding, visit /apprenticeships


Vivark comes closer to achieving apprentice pledge ViVARK has welcomed 11 apprentices to its team, as part of a pledge for the trainees to make up 5% of its workforce. The Knowsley-based facilities management company and social enterprise, which is part of the first Ark Group, has appointed apprentices to both office and operative positions. The new recruits bring the first Ark Group’s number of apprenticeship openings to 51 since 2011. Last year Vivark took on five apprentices, four of which are now permanent employees. Speaking about the value of apprentices, Tony Cahill, executive director at Vivark, says: “Apprentices are a real asset to any business. They often bring a different perspective and new solutions to existing challenges, and given the mechanisms to

Vivark is welcoming apprentices to workforce

demonstrate their ability, can add real value to any task. Provided they are offered the training and support needed, they will demonstrate confidence and a work ethic which we strive for in all employees. “being able to put classroom learning into practice is an obvious benefit of an apprenticeship. This practical experience is enhanced

further because the apprentices work in a ‘real life’ environment, meaning they often have to learn to deal with unexpected challenges as and when they arise – another valuable career skill to pick up early on.” for more information about Vivark, visit or call 0151 290 7888.

Nominations now open for apprenticeship awards Last year’s Liverpool City Region Apprenticeship Awards

eMPLoyeRS, LeARNiNG providers and apprentices are being encouraged to put their nominations forward for the prestigious Liverpool City Region Apprenticeship Awards 2014. Nominations are now open ahead of this year’s spectacular ceremony, taking place on 20 June at Knowsley Hall, which will recognise hardworking apprentices and dedicated employers from across all six Merseyside boroughs. Award categories for the second annual event range from Apprentice of the year to Liverpool City Region Apprentice employer of the year. Ronnie Round, leader of Knowsley Metropolitan borough Council, says: “i have championed apprenticeships for many years, and am pleased to say that the city region has been working well to promote apprenticeships to young people and businesses. “businesses who invest in staff through apprenticeships are making a difference and growing and these awards will give the chance for this to be celebrated. “The standard of nominations received for last year’s inaugural awards was very high, and we expect the standard to be even higher this year.” for more information on the Liverpool City Region Apprenticeship Awards 2014, sponsored by Greater Merseyside Learning Providers federation and Vivark, please visit

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Cotton House on Old Hall Street Cotton House is located in the heart of Liverpool’s executive commercial district, offering stunning balcony views and excellent transport links – the easy choice for a professional business looking to make a mark in the North West – all at a fantastic rate of £7.50 per sq/ft. These serviced executive suites may be split into smaller spaces, providing the flexibility you and your business require. Cotton House also boasts an excellent internet speed, with a connection of up to 100Gbps available. Email or call 0151 375 9932. For more information visit

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Bitesize thinking

Paul Jasper

managing director, Coresafe Consulting

In my crystal ball... Looking into my professional health and safety crystal ball (made out of shatterproof glass of course), the proposed changes to the Construction, Design and Management (CDM) regulations will no doubt have an impact across the sector. Proposals to drop the CDM co-ordinator role and pass any duties onto the lead designer, such as the architect, or a ‘natural party’ within the team, such as a project manager, will no doubt cause consternation in the respective professions, as will the inclusion of domestic projects into the fold. Will they grasp the ethos and spirit of the regulations? Or will it provide a golden opportunity for current Construction, Design and Management Consultants to advise our learned design team members on their newly allocated duties? I see a mixture of both - but will they ever actually be implemented? Only time will tell.

If only I’d known… Hindsight is a wonderful thing and my home city of Liverpool’s achievements in the last decade have rightly secured the plaudits of both the UK and international property world, but I wonder if we’ve rested on our laurels a little? Have we cast our eyes widely enough to look at what has succeeded elsewhere? Have we adapted the best ideas for Liverpool? There are still so many gaps in provision in the city, from a proper artisan market like Vancouver’s Granville Island to a waterfront aquarium like that in Barcelona or the stunning leisure pavilions on the quaysides at Porto. We have to build on what we’ve got - and with proper planning and resourcing we can. It can come from within, too, as the campaign around the flyovers shows. Let’s hope we have no regrets on what we could’ve or should’ve achieved on reflection in 10 years’ time.

My favourite building with... Phil Rees-Roberts

MD and head of property at Rees-Roberts Solicitors

Goodison Park Home of Everton Football Club, Goodison Park is a cathedral of character. It is ancient and modern at the same time and on a stadium tour hours before the fans arrive, it doesn’t feel empty. The stadium and the ground are a hive of activity for the main event. Its grand scale is apparent with police and security moving between banked rows of seats and groundsmen busy perfecting the pitch. When full to capacity, you get a ‘feel’ of the presence of fans, past and present, united in supporting the team. On television St Luke’s Church appears weaved into the Gwladys Street stand. Like Goodison Park it has the will for survival. The plans to relocate to Kings Dock and Kirkby evaporated as they had no substance. Idiosyncrasies such as the Main Stand “obstructed views “caused by pillars absent in modern construction methods are endearing, not annoying. When it is replaced I hope it will be here within the surrounding terraced streets and it is regenerated, not demolished, acting as gatekeepers and protectors so that there is continuity from past to present.


“Goodison Park is a cathedral of character”

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Bitesize thinking



Peter Allen partner and head of corporate, Cassell Moore

Curriculum VITAE Main duties: To build and grow a corporate and commercial team supporting small to medium sized businesses in the local area. We advise and support the businesses as they set up, raise finance, develop and grow through to ultimate exit via sale, MBO or a flotation. Education: St Francis Xavier’s College in Woolton and then a law degree at the University of Nottingham. First job: 1988 - making and selling bacon butties from a cafe on Great Homer Street market. I earned £20 from 6am-2pm, plus all the bacon butties I could eat and tea I could drink. Shortest job: During a gap year after law school, in a dish pit in a busy restaurant in Banff - a town in the Canadian Rockies. On my first (and last) night I’d already worked a full day job, I was the only washer on, both sinks were blocked, dishes were piling up, waitresses were shouting at me. What’s the secret to your success? Working hard for my clients and always treating their deal as if it’s my own. What’s the best piece of business advice you’ve ever received? No matter how small a deal may be, it is a big deal to those involved - treat it as such. What advice would you give to somebody starting out in the industry? It’s never too early to make and keep contacts (and try to help them out where you can). They will be invaluable in years to come. What makes Cassell Moore different? In corporate we’re a team of only senior and experienced lawyers, so we don’t spend hours focusing on things in a deal which don't matter to you. Our service is specialist and experienced. Tell us a little bit about Cassell Moore’s plans for the next 12 months: Our first job is to establish ourselves in the local market and win a reputation for the quality and value of our offering. After that, we want to become recognised as the premier boutique commercial services firm to Merseyside SMEs and owner managed businesses (and their owners and directors).

Tweet all about it The 5 best commercial tweets

1 2 3 4 5

@DanInnes 21,000 delegates at #mipim2014. @ProLiverpool Great turnout at the Cannes Do event @Exchange_Stn today - thanks to all for coming and making it another successful year #liverpool #property. @CWPConsultants Well there didn't seem to be much in yesterday’s budget for commercial property. @GMChamber Property and Construction panel #GMBC14: Tough environment for construction firms still. Property market in Manchester seems to be on the up. @lpoolcouncil Liverpool City Council completes acquisition of Cunard Building. Set to deliver massive savings and income for the council.

172,640 sq ft The size of the Grade A office space set to be developed at the site which was part of the former Manchester Exchange railway station. Carillion, Ask Real Estate and Tristan Capital Partners are joint venture partners for the scheme in Salford’s Greengate Embankment regeneration area.

3,000 The International Trade Expo, taking place during the International Festival for Business, is aiming to attract upwards of this many delegates. The Liverpool event will target SMEs looking to export, and connect them with emerging markets.


The number of consumer and trade exhibitions which have made the first bookings at ACC Liverpool’s upcoming exhibition centre, set to open next year. The Federation of Petroleum Suppliers FPS Expo, Bliss Wedding Shows’ The Wedding Show, Girls Day Out, MCM Expo, The Allergy and Free From Show North and the UK Baby and Toddler Show by UKFE have all signed up for the venue.

23 The number of UK and European buildings that Manchester’s One Angel Square was up against when it won the Your BREEAM (the Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Method) Award. The Co-operative Group’s head office won a public vote for the accolade, which recognises environmental excellence in building developments.

2027 The year the Crewe section of Phase Two of HS2 would be complete under proposals by Sir David Higgins. To deliver benefits to the north sooner, the chair of HS2 Ltd’s report suggested the work should be completed earlier than the planned 2033 date, and should also include a new integrated hub station at Crewe.

£100m The cost of Chester’s Central Business Quarter, which is expected to unlock 3,500 new jobs by 2028. Work on the first phase of the major development is now underway.

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Appointments Morecrofts appoints commercial team member Liverpool’s Morecrofts Solicitors has strengthened its commercial law team with the appointment of intellectual property Paul Edels specialist, Paul Edels. Paul joins the firm from Brown Turner Ross and has previously spent 15 years working in-house in product development, brand management and international licensing. He will be advising clients on a range of commercial matters including commercial agreements, corporate transactions and intellectual property. Helen Broughton, managing partner at Morecrofts Solicitors, says: “Paul has a rich and fairly unique blend of industry and legal sector experience, which we are confident he will bring to bear on behalf of Morecrofts’ clients. “Our commercial team continues to thrive and Paul’s arrival will bring further fresh impetus to our ambitions for future growth in this area.” New development director at Langtree Neal Biddle is the new development director at Langtree after leaving his role as development manager at Manchester Airports Group. Neal gained experience during six years at Bruntwood, a stint at Euro Car Parks and three years at MAG. He will now be tasked with assisting Langree’s work at the 1,600-acre Carrington site in Trafford and Daresbury Science Park in Halton. Neal Biddle

John Downes, group chief executive, said: "It's great to welcome Neal to the Langtree team. We have made a number of strategic investments in the last 12 months and I'm confident that Neal's experience will be very valuable to the development team and to the success of our development activities going forward." 20 MOVE COMMERCIAL

New head of real estate at Deloitte Deloitte has promoted Michele Steel to the role of head of Deloitte Real Estate in the North West. Michele, who was formerly a director at the company, will replace Simon Bedform, who will now look after development consultancy and regeneration schemes from Deloitte’s London office.

Michele Steel

Having spent 14 years with Drivers Jonas and Deloitte in total, Michele was part of the team that helped to integrate Drivers Jonas with Deloitte when it was purchased in 2010. She says: "I'm excited about the huge opportunity that Deloitte Real Estate has in what is proving to be a dynamic and growing regional market.” Commercial litigator joins Vincents Solicitors Vincents Solicitors is celebrating 80 new clients in the past 12 months by employing a commercial litigator at its Stephen Topping Preston head office. Stephen Topping has joined the law firm as the commercial department reports a 40% increase in business in the past year. He joins from Dickson Haslam and will specialise in debt recovery, disagreements between landlords and tenants, and conflict regarding trespass and eviction. He says: “I will be supporting Vincents’ existing customers in this field and seeking to grow commercial litigation business. I have a strong network in south Preston and central Lancashire with whom I already work, and will be looking to meet with more companies based in the north of the county.” Stephen will operate out of the Winckley Square office but will regularly attend regional offices in Lytham, Garstang, Colne, Longridge, Knott End and Penwortham.

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Financial News

Investment fund expands capacity A MAJOR North West investment fund has increased its financial capacity and is seeking new projects within the region. The North West Evergreen Fund has provided loans of over £15m to four major development schemes in the region in 2014 and is now seeking more opportunities in the coming months. The fund loaned £7m for infrastructure works at the 250-acre Logistics North site in Bolton, which was recently purchased by Manchester Science Parks (MSP), and supplied a £6m loan to Allied London for its Spinningfields development. It has also invested in the 400,000 sq ft


Soapworks redevelopment in Manchester and the Citylabs development. Rod Lockhart, director of investment advisory at CBRE, the investment advisor for Evergreen, says: “Evergreen was established to provide developers with an opportunity to secure muchneeded finance for strategic sites that will make a significant contribution to the success of the North West’s economy. While we have a strong pipeline of potential projects and hope to announce further loans shortly, the fund’s capacity has recently increased and we continue to seek opportunities to invest in viable projects in the region.” Great Northern Warehouse

Strong demand for Manchester leisure investments MANCHESTER was home to two of the largest commercial leisure investments in the past 12 months, as demand from tenants remained ‘strong’. According to Savills’ ‘Spotlight on Commercial Leisure Q1 2014’, CBRE Global Investors’ £24.45m investment in The Circus - a 140,500 sq ft leisure and retail complex - in January this year was one of the 10 key leisure investments in the UK since April 2013.

Another Manchester deal, Resolution Property’s £71m investment in the 339,000 sq ft Great Northern in October last year, was also listed in the deals and was not only the highest price but also the largest area leisure investment to make the top 10. Across the country leisure centre transactions totalled £675m, a 30% increase on the previous year, and strong demand for quality leisure offerings mean yields of between

5.75% to 6% are available in the current market. The report says: “Leisure will continue to be on investors ‘shopping lists’ into 2014 and beyond. The ability to acquire dominant leisure schemes in strong locations, with solid covenant profiles, long dated lease terms and the chance to add value with proactive management will prove challenging and therefore such ‘rare beasts’ when openly marketed will induce competitive bidding.”

Call for more North West technology investment INVESTMENT AND VENTURE capital must be in place to support the North West’s science, technology and innovation companies, according to a new report. The North West Business Leadership Team (NWBLT) has published a report highlighting the region’s expertise in research and design in the science and innovation sectors, describing it as ‘world class’. It now wants barriers to investment and growth removed by encouraging SMEs to work with Local Enterprise Partnerships and the North West Fund to stimulate growth. The report also calls for the £42m Alan Turing Institute for big data, announced in the 2014 Budget, to be built in the North West alongside the UK’s Graphene and advanced materials research. Juergen Maier, NWBLT chair and managing director of Siemens Industry UK, says: “What is clear is that as a region we have the infrastructure in place to be at the heart of an innovation boom. If this is to happen we need to leverage business investment and marry it with our great universities to ensure we can create growth through technology.” Juergen also says the North West must develop an international marketing strategy to sell the North West as an innovative market place.

Jeurgen Maier


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By Stephen Hurrell

Industrial expansion 2014 is the year of the retail initial public offering (IPO) and the North West is becoming a hub for big businesses seeking property for their head office and distribution operations. As the North West market recovers, what does the next year have in store for the region’s retail office and distribution centres?

In the industrial and logistics sector, demand remains positive with significant unsatisfied requirements across the North West region.

Steven Manifold, senior surveyor in Knight Frank’s industrial team


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Industrial expansion Focus

A flurry of North West IPOs were announced within the first three months of 2014 and with them came a boom in applications for industrial and logistics space in the region. Cheshire-based Pets at Home, the UK’s largest pet store chain, was valued at £1.5bn when it issued its IPO early in 2014, raising close to £275m to fund expansion of its in-store grooming centres and veterinary surgeries. B&M Retail, which has a Liverpool head office and distribution centre, could be valued at close to £2bn when it floats later in 2014 in a move that is widely expected by market experts. What this means to the North West industrial property market is expansion; with several major warehouse and industrial schemes set to be completed in the next 12 months. Online clothing retailer is valued at £500m after its stock market flotation and the Manchester-based company has submitted plans for a 102,500 sq ft distribution building and a four-storey amenity facility of 30,500 sq ft in Burnley’s Heasandford Industrial Estate, doubling its current operation and taking staff numbers from 425 and 785. Elsewhere, Skelmersdale-based retailer Matalan has employed Morgan Sindall to construct a new £19m, 132,000 sq ft head office in Knowsley Industrial Park. The North West’s retailers are enjoying a boom period and Richard Harding, partner and North West IPO leader at business advisory firm EY, believes the rise in retail expansion is because of rising confidence in the market. He says: “There have been lots of businesses just waiting for the market and pricing to improve over the last few years and that's now starting to happen. Across the north, we are currently working on four live IPOs and have a strong pipeline of other businesses considering alternative investment market

(AIM) or main market listings. We expect these to come to market in the next 12 months and are therefore seeing first hand, the growing confidence of companies raising money through the public markets.”

Space to grow It is not just the incumbent retailers that are making headlines as the North West continues to attract major occupiers to the area. Amazon is reportedly searching for a North West site and rumours have linked the online retailer with Ellesmere Port and Croxteth, where an application has won approval for a 1m sq ft warehouse in Stonebridge Cross. Steven Manifold, senior surveyor in Knight Frank’s industrial team, says: “In the industrial and logistics sector, demand remains positive with significant unsatisfied requirements across the North West region. Notable retailers actively seeking space in the North West currently include Amazon, The Hut Group, Northwood Paper and Ocado, with requirements up to one million sq ft. “The steady erosion of good quality existing buildings, however, leaves them with limited options. As a result, design and build is the route they will have to take to get the size and quality of building they need.” He points out Asda, Travis Perkins and Hermes have all secured space at the 575-acre Omega site in Warrington using design and build solutions as part of the first stage of the development, which is expected to be completed in the summer. Steven adds: “Other sites have also signed up their first occupiers including DHL at Airport City and Dole Fresh UK at M6 Epic in Wigan. We will continue to see design and build announcements over the forthcoming months and on the back of the confidence returning to the market, we are starting to

hear discussion on speculative development in the North West.”

North West appeal Why are retailers choosing the North West and thriving once settled in the area? At the Omega Warrington site (pictured), occupiers have been secured for 1.6m sq ft of space and the ’strong occupier interest’ has led to a further application for 2.1m sq ft of manufacturing and logistics space at the ‘Zone 7’ part of the site. Liam Fennell from KUC Properties Ltd, partner in Omega Warrington Ltd, says transport infrastructure is vital for distribution centres. He says: "The strong occupier interest in Omega is due to its access to a highly skilled workforce, strategic location adjoining the motorway network and the ability to deliver projects quickly.” At the MIPIM property expo in Cannes, Peel Group announced a new joint venture project alongside Harworth Estates to deliver 6,000 acres of land in the UK for industrial units. It is no surprise to see 42% of the sites are based in the North West, where occupants will be able to take advantage of future Peel projects including the Liverpool 2 port and Port Salford, as well as Manchester’s Airport City and a potential high speed rail network to the city. John Whittaker, chairman of The Peel Group, says: "In assembling the portfolio, we have our sights firmly fixed on the long-term and are delighted that the majority of the sites offer multi-modal transport options, helping to meet the current and future needs of occupiers who want to move goods swiftly and cost-effectively.” Confidence in industrial and logistics space in the North West is rising. Backed by a number of successful IPOs and an increase in requirements for quality developments, industrial construction is taking centre stage across the region in 2014.


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Natasha Young

Redundancy from a drainage firm left Phil Piercy with only a small budget to set up his own business and little idea of what the future would hold. But with a fearless approach to opportunities, an eye for a gap in the market and an ability to attract big clients, his Birkenhead-based firm Clearground has achieved huge success.

Clear winner Originally starting life as a domestic drainage company, with Phil carrying out the majority of tasks himself, the last decade has seen Clearground develop into a multi-service company with a turnover of £1m per year and an ever increasing workforce. In fact, turnover grew by 16% in the last year of trading alone. Carrying out everything from commercial window cleaning, graffiti removal and waste management through to kitchen fan and extractor cleaning and pest control, Clearground now counts commercial property sector names such as CBRE, Bruntwood, Downing and Keppie Massie amongst its clients, along with hospitality brands like Interstate Hotels and Marco Pierre White restaurants. “The business is growing and we’re being successful. I don’t know if Richard Branson would look at me and say I’m doing it right, but I’m doing something right,” says Phil. Having previously spent around nine years working for a locally based national drainage firm where he worked on wagons before being promoted to supervisor, area manager and operations manager, 28 MOVE COMMERCIAL

Phil remembers being “confused” about his future before he was eventually faced with the possibility of redundancy. He says: “I took the redundancy of about £7,000 and as part of the deal I said ‘don’t give me the full £7,000, I’ll take £5,000 and I’ll take that little van over there and that jetting unit,’ so that’s how I started.” At first Clearground was up against competition in the drainage business, so Phil looked to carve out a niche for his venture. “I thought, ‘I’ve got a waste carriers’ licence from the Environment Agency so therefore I can move waste for people, and I’ve got this little jetting unit which is built for cleaning drains, but if I put an attachment on it then it can clean roofs, paving and graffiti’. We just started diversifying with our equipment,” explains Phil. He saw a potential gap in the market for “bringing the professional” into industrial and commercial window cleaning too and, after researching the required equipment, set about adding it to Clearground’s offering. “Pretty much straight away we encountered problems because these

60ft pure water pole fed systems you can use are great on a nice square building but, with modern designs, not many buildings are nice and square anymore. “About six years ago we invested in an access platform and that opened that whole other raft of work with regards to high level access, high level maintenance works and structural bird proofing on buildings. We started realising we had quite a niche bunch of services. “We realised we should start pushing it down the commercial and hospitality route because we can find as many clients as we want who’ll take one service but we want clients who’ll take five, six or seven. “That’s where the allegiances with the hospitality sector started, moving in with the CBREs, Bruntwoods, Keppie Massies and Downings of this world.” CBRE became Clearground’s first big client, after Phil impressed the commercial property consultants during an unexpected call out. “I got a call off an old colleague saying the old Beetham Tower in Liverpool city centre had a blocked bin shoot, and did I know anyone who could come and clear it,” Phil

recalls. “I was actually out at a meeting so I had my suit on and I turned up there not having a clue what I was about to look at. I managed to clear this blocked shoot and cover myself in rubbish, and they just thought what I’d done was excellent. They started giving us a few more jobs and we started trying to target specific city centre buildings and specific agents after that.” Now Clearground counts Liverpool’s iconic ‘Three Graces’ among the buildings it works on too, looking after drainage at the sites. As the business is already slightly ahead of growth targets for its current year, Clearground is looking to open an office in Birmingham to cater for the increase in southern-based work the hospitality sector is providing, and with a couple of additional services in the pipeline too Phil is anticipating a bright future for the company. He says: “We’re looking at doubling in size within three years from now and trebling within five years. Within the three years we’d like to have about 50% more staff so we’ll be up to about 30, and certainly within five years we’d be up to somewhere

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Phil Piercy, managing director, Clearground Entrepreneur

We’re looking at doubling in size within three years from now and trebling within five years.

around 40-45 staff.” Phil puts Clearground’s success down to a number of factors, from its “full package” of services, professionalism and corporate appearance to its high profile client list, inward investment and support from family members, including his wife Claire, to the likes of Invest Wirral – Wirral Council’s business support team – which has helped to find new premises to accommodate growing numbers of staff and equipment. “We’ve grown through inward investment, we’re a self-financing company and we basically owe next to nothing. We’ve bought things as and when we can afford it and we haven’t stretched ourselves too much, but certainly over the last couple of years now things have started to take off,” he says, adding: “We haven’t reinvented the wheel with what we do, we’ve just identified and realised why people will buy from us and why people will carry on buying from us. “We’ve found a range of services and we tie up quite nicely with some of the hospitality chains and some of the commercial estate agents, it’s a nice fit for us.” MOVE COMMERCIAL 29

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Key Events Cannes Do 2014




Property professionals enjoy annual Cannes Do Big names from Liverpool’s commercial property sector gathered at Exchange Station as a highlight of the industry’s annual event calendar took place. Following the city’s return to MIPIM in Cannes this year, the 2014 Liverpool Cannes Do provided a celebration of the global exhibition right here in the region. Move Commercial was a sponsor of the event, which was hosted by Professional Liverpool and featured dinner followed by afternoon entertainment, prize draws and a drinks reception with networking opportunities. Stuart Keppie, partner at Keppie Massie and chair of Professional Liverpool, was among the speakers who addressed guests, and entertainment was provided by compere Willie Miller and comedian Malcolm Lord. Children’s charity Kind benefitted from this year’s Cannes Do, as guests provided generous donations.








1. Exchange Station provided the venue. 2. James Evans and Dee O’Leary, (Santander). 3. Property professionals attended the event. 4. Gary Bank, (Arup), Janet Melling and Martin Watson, (Brock Carmichael), John Foster, (Wades). 5. Keppie Massie. 6. Stephen Yip (Kind). 7. Alex Clark (Professional Liverpool) helped collect donations for Kind. 8. Move Commercial was a sponsor at the Cannes Do. 9. James McGivern, Ian Steele & Patrick Whitby, (GVA). 10. Guests watched speakers and comedians.


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Key Events Cannes Do 2014













11. Comedians provided an afternoon of laughter. 12. Alex Clark (Professional Liverpool) presents Paul Falconer (sponsors, Falconer Chester Hall) with a medal. 13. Chloe Quinn, Andrew Watson, Helen Kirkham & Kellie Wakefield, (GVA). 14. This year’s Cannes Do was well attended. 15. Dee O’Leary (Santander). 16. Guests at the Bruntwood table. 17. Willie Miller compered the event. 18. Move Commercial encouraged attendees to tweet their Cannes Do selfies. 19. The Cannes Do was a chance to network. 20. Stuart Sharply, Maddie McColgan & Nicola Sloan, Right Move. 21. Simon Storer, (Joviet Investments), Mark Worthington, (CBRE). 22. Paul Grover, (Arup), Louise McWatt, (The Big Partenrship) & Ian Pollitt, (Peel Holdings).


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Key Events Cannes Do 2014









23. The Hitchcock Wright & Partners table. 24. Paul Jasper, (Coresafe Consulting), Richard Hennity, (Santander). 25. Stuart Keppie, (Keppie Massie). 26. Comedian Malcolm Lord entertained guests. 27. Chris Weights, (Matthews & Goodman), John Clegg, (Downing) & Kevin Lee, (Hill Dickinson). 28. Willie Miller. 29. Julie Johnson, (Morecrofts), Helen Broughton, (Morecrofts) & Sue O’Brien, (Pall Mall Medical). 30. Mathew Giles, (Mgma Studio) Ellis Hill, (Skyline Property Solutions) & Chris Lydon, (HL Structural Engineers).


Key Events Cannes Do 2014






Star selfie Throughout this year’s event, Move Commercial called on guests to share their Cannes Do ‘selfie’ photographs via our Twitter account @MoveCommercial. A version of our very own attempt was displayed on every table. Using the #MCselfie tag, numerous attendees joined in on the day, but there could only be one winner of a space in our special four-page Cannes Do picture spread. This Oscars-style entry from @rees_straw was our favourite.


37 31. Mark Goodrich, (Estates Gazette), Lindsay Drinkwater, (Sisk Contarctors), Chris Berkin & James Grey, (Estates Gazette). 32. Scott Barnes, (Barnes Construction), Carl Clover & Lindsay Fallon, (Innov8 Developemnt Solutions). 33. Winning sponsors were pleased with their medals. 34. Hill Dickinson guests. 35. Stuart Sharply, (Rightmove). 36. Alex Clarke (Professional Liverpool) presents sponsor Julian Rathbone (Rathbones) with a medal. 37. Margaret Batty & Moira Hartwell, volunteers for Kind.


By Stephen Hurrell

Making the grade As the commercial property market enters what many believe to be a tentative recovery, Move Commercial gathers three of the region’s most influential office market experts to discuss Manchester’s Grade A office supply and what can be done to stimulate development in the coming months and years.

Christopher Cheap director, GVA

Kirsty Littleford associate director – national office agency, CBRE

Paul Kelly partner, north west office agency and development, Knight Frank

Making the grade Lunch debate

Is there a lack of Grade A space in Manchester at the moment? PK: There is a real, genuine lack of Grade A space within Manchester. We’ve gone through the period of the erosion of the existing Grade A supply without any meaningful replenishment. There have been some significant lettings, which have further eroded the space so we really are at a pinch point. CC: The facts are that last year there was about 150,000 sq ft of Grade A take up in Manchester city centre of a total take up of about 870,000 sq ft. You can see the numbers have come down in line with the lack of supply. Paul is absolutely right. We are reaching a pinch point in terms of a lack of supply. PK: If the product isn’t there people can’t come. That’s the dilemma that we’ve currently got. Why are developers failing to react to demand for Grade A space? CC: The reason that nobody is building at the moment is because we’re still a little bit away from funding markets supplying funding for developers to build speculatively. We are behind One St Peter’s Square, when I lost a year of my life

doing a pre-let to KPMG and on that scheme we all had to sit and look each other in the eye and decide whether we’re going to actually build it on the back of a 63,000 sq ft commitment. PK: Any significant investment in new development in the city may need to be underpinned by a prelet. There’s a lot of talk about Two St Peter’s Square and they’re positioning themselves to bring that to the market speculatively. Will others be courageous enough to commit to speculative build? CC: Every day people feel more confident about the market place and we’re getting closer to speculative development. That doesn’t mean a full pre-commitment. We’re talking 20-30% pre-commitment but if you’re looking at a building like One Spinningfields that’s a 300,000 sq ft building so it’s a significant pre-commitment required. Will the lack of supply have an adverse effect on rents? CC: Argent has achieved over £60 per sq ft in Kings Cross, London. Our prime rent is £30 per sq ft so this represents a big discount compared to London.

Every day people feel more confident about the market place and we’re getting closer to speculative development.

When businesses move to Manchester it allows them to price the work they do more competitively. KL: It’s exactly that. For our corporate clients, when they are looking out of London it always seems to be North West based and Manchester is at the centre of that. Where they are able to move at the moment it seems to be North West based with Manchester and that is because of cheaper rents. They feel they can still get the same quality in regards to staff as well. If a business moves, some staff will move with it but not everybody does. CC: In Manchester prime rents have ranged between £28-£30 per sq ft this year but because we’re moving into a pre-let world we’ve hit £32 per sq ft. We’re not scheduled to hit that for another two or three years if you base it on growth projections. So if we hit £32 per sq ft on pre-lets this year we won’t see much growth on top of that. KL: It won’t just jump up to £35£38 per sq ft, it will be much more gradual than that. PK: There are a number of developers who have oven-ready


“ ”

The days of swathes of office buildings being thrown up around motorway junctions are gone. You need to offer retail, residential and leisure.

schemes – schemes that have consented. They’re competing with each other to land these large corporate occupiers for pre-lets. They can’t out-price themselves. Whilst the stock doesn’t exist they are competing with each other for pre-lets that will trigger their developments. CC: Previously it’s been about maxing out rents, creating the best products, creating the likes of Spinningfields etc. Now if you look at the recent absorption of space such as One First Street and Piccadilly Place, they’ve been at rents of £23-£25 per sq ft. There are occupiers out there who do have an aspiration for better quality space but aren’t in the market to pay £30-£32 sq ft. There will always be professional service occupiers who will want the best spaces who will pay £30-32 per sq ft but we are seeing a swell of occupiers who have that aspiration for good quality space and they’re prepared to go for mid-£20 price point and developers are delivering that property to make hay from those sort of occupiers. Can refurbishments fill the gap? PK: The thing about new buildings is they are more efficient so occupiers such as Barclays at 38 MOVE COMMERCIAL

Piccadilly can use the space more efficiently per head. In an older building they may not be able to use the space as efficiently. KL: Especially when you’re looking at buildings such as a 1970s build, where it could be more inefficient. We do tend to get focused on square foot. PK: Exactly, but you have to look at how efficient the floor plate is and how many staff can you fit in it as well. That’s why the larger, newer buildings are often a better offer. However, last year the average letting was 3,000 sq ft in Manchester. KL: Around 80% of the market was sub-5,000 sq ft. CC: Which means there is sufficient scale in the Manchester market to support all sizes of letting and I think a lot of the Grade C, tertiary stock will drop out of the market. But what Manchester does incredibly well is bring forward really good quality refurbishments where Manchester’s attractive older buildings have been converted to quality office space with a price point in the mid-teens. KL: A good refurbishment will always be a good proposition but buildings that are not appropriate to refurbish or are not done well obviously won’t work.

What impact will out of town Grade A space such as Airport City have on city centre demand? PK: Some occupiers don’t want to be in the city centre. In Manchester we’ve seen Grade A space supply is eroding but out of town we are in a situation where the existing building that would suit their requirement is not what they desired. CC: The days of swathes of office buildings being thrown up around motorway junctions are gone. You need to offer retail, residential and leisure. The likes of Birchwood Park in Warrington and Cheadle Royal in Manchester have done this well. The likes of Airport City will react to that and will be a slightly different to what’s masterplanned. It’ll grow holistically into a proper city, as it says in the name. KL: Airport City will end up becoming almost an extension of Manchester. Some businesses actually prefer out of town because it’s all about the life that they want to bring to their staff. It’s all about staff retention. Keeping the staff happy with a nice area to work. It’s all about retaining that. These businesses put a lot of money into staff development and they want to keep them there. It’s all about the flowery nice stuff and

Making the grade Lunch debate

developers are starting to focus a lot more on that now. PK: You’re right. They don’t offer exactly what the city centre offers but they do offer a nice, landscaped park environment coupled with good transportation. It’s a step between real business parks and the city centres. Airport City and the city centre can work hand in hand. Some businesses don’t have to be in the city centre. CC: The initial phases will be people who have to be near to the airport. Subsequent phases will see others move there as it reaches a critical mass. The view of everybody involved, including the council, is that it will complement rather than compete with the city centre. Can anything be done to stimulate development? PK: The development process can’t be shortened, it takes a certain length of time to build the building and there’s no magic wand to improve that. Improving confidence in the funding market will prove to be the trigger but at this moment in time those people that can deliver Grade A space are still waiting for pre-lets. Occupiers are savvy to that and that’s why occupiers with lease events in three years time are in the market now trying to identify and secure a building.

The length of time it is taking for some occupiers to make a decision can be shortened and they need to wake up to the closing window of supply and the ability of developers to deliver products.

CC: One thing we can do is shorten those decision making processes. The length of time it is taking for some occupiers to make a decision can be shortened and they need to wake up to the closing window of supply and the ability of developers to deliver products. Those occupiers have to be a little more nimble if we’re going to see buildings off the ground. Unless some occupiers make decisions quickly they can miss the boat. PK: That’s the reality. If those occupiers do miss the boat there will still be developers with planning consent to sites which they won’t be able to deliver without funding because the pre-let will not be ready to commit. CC: You look at what’s happened with Greengate where Salford City Council has effectively taken a lease on the buildings so the funding can be achieved. Tristan Capital has agreed to fund it because Salford has signed a lease. As every letting is done that funding will drop away but what it does is make the scheme happen. By a quirk of the river bend it means this scheme is actually in Manchester city centre while still being in Salford, which means Manchester will see a scheme be developed but only via public sector intervention.

ARTISAN 22-28 Bridge Street, Manchester, M3

Situated in the Spinningfields district, Artisan is a vast rustic restaurant set in brick-clad semi-industrial space, with art installations adorning walls, floors and ceilings throughout and neat touches such as potted herbs and an open kitchen adding to the relaxed atmosphere. Serving fire-cooked pizzas as a speciality the menu also has a surprising amount of versatility with filling salads, traditional meat and fish and more experimental options that pack plenty of flavour. Known for its attentive staff and tip-top service, Artisan is not only a popular lunchtime haunt for the area’s business people. At night it becomes a trendy bar with cocktails top of the menu and DJ sets at the versatile venue. For more information on the Living Ventures venue visit



By Natasha Young

Ever since the late 1990s the Spinningfields development has been underway, broadening Manchester’s range of leisure, retail and office space. And whilst it continues to evolve with further building projects in the pipeline, the scheme has not only transformed the city centre but has also helped shape Andrea George’s career.

The placemaker HAvInG PREvIouSLy worked for companies including Dunlop Heywood, GvA, Markham vaughan Gillingham and Tushingham Moore, Andrea has always worked alongside property development and investment firm Allied London as a leasing agent on its long-running project, therefore playing a part throughout its success. “I started in ’97 and I think it was about ‘98-‘99 when it was the inception of Spinningfields, so in one guise or another, through all those companies I’ve worked on the scheme. It’s fair to say that I’ve got under the skin of it over the years,” she says. It’s no surprise then that when Allied London was looking for a commercial director to lead the forthcoming developments at Spinningfields, along with other major northern projects including the redevelopment of the city’s iconic old Granada Studios and also Leeds Dock, Andrea was a perfect fit for the role. According to Andrea her position came about “organically,” after she’d already worked so closely with the firm and its chief executive, Mike Ingall. She adds:“I was working on Spinningfields in any case and, because I’d worked so closely with Allied London throughout the years and they’d taken more stock on, it needed somebody to come in and facilitate everything. That’s basically my role as commercial director. It’s a massive opportunity to 42 MOVE COMMERCIAL

work on three diverse schemes.” now home to a wealth of businesses, retailers and food and beverage venues, as well as event space, the growing Spinningfields area is an established destination in itself, and is therefore a shining example of not only what Allied London is hoping to achieve with its other northern projects, but also what Andrea has come to succeed at. “over the years my forte, if you like, has been working on placemaking schemes. I’ve worked on Deansgate Locks, The Printworks, one Piccadilly Gardens, The Mailbox in Birmingham and Spinningfields as well, and from a place-making point of view Spinningfields has achieved that with great impact.” Hailing her work on the scheme as her biggest career achievement so far, Andrea goes on to say: “I think it’s obviously got its own sense of place when you hear other people just talking about it and the general public saying ‘oh I’m going to Spinningfields at the weekend’, or whatever it might be. It’s another reason to come to Manchester.” She adds: “Deansgate Locks and The Printworks, for me, were both back in the day. I worked on both of those schemes to let the first lettings so after that and as the years go by there’s obviously been changes of occupiers but, overall, they’ve all stood the test of time. I think they’re all still viable schemes and they all

have their places in the market. That’s fantastic, and is really enriching Manchester.” With the 165,000 sq ft Cotton Building office development due to get started on site later this year, having received planning approval, and the 350,000 sq ft one Spinningfields office space currently at the planning stage, Spinningfields is “expanding and strengthening” still, however Andrea says old Granada Studios is where Allied London’s long-term strategy now lies in Manchester. Although there is not yet an established long-term plan for what was once the north West home of ITv and the iconic set of popular soap opera Coronation Street, in the short-term Allied London is looking to capture Manchester’s “entrepreneurial spirit” whilst opening up the 13-acre site to the public for the first time in years. under the working name of St John’s Quarter, Andrea says the project will provide a “voyage of discovery” for visitors, as the site plays host to pop-up markets, food and drink bars, music, film and theatre, concert areas and workspace. Describing it as an “incubator space,” Andrea suggests the idea is responding to the “demand from those independents that may have a cottage industry, if you like, so they’re making whatever it is at home and they’re doing markets

but they actually want to take it to the next stage, or they’re a small independent and they just want to grow their own business”. Allied London is already said to have been “inundated” by businesses interested in occupying the site, including London operators who are keen to venture up north and be part of the scheme at such an iconic setting. Andrea highlights that Allied London is very much hoping for the scheme to become another “destination” within the city, as it will provide scope for visitors to see products being made on site as well as sold. So with what’s seemingly a bright and busy future ahead in her new role, Andrea’s main aim is to simply “deliver”. “Spinningfields is still ongoing and evolving – there’s still quite a lot to do and obviously more development is going to happen. “on old Granada Studios there’s obviously a short-term plan but, as that turns into a medium and long-term plan, there’ll be a role there. Leeds Dock is, again, within its conception so we’re just about to launch that proper and then obviously it’s the deliverability of that. That could take however long that takes and then I’m sure there’ll be other opportunities on the horizon. “I think the goal and strategy is just to deliver what I’m here to deliver and to do it well.”

Andrea George, commercial director, Allied London Mover & Shaker

Over the years my forte, if you like, has been working on place-making schemes.


p35-56_Move Commercial 31/03/2014 15:49 Page 45

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Lunch Date

By Natasha Young

Brasco Lounge 27A Mann Island, L3 With a prime location, Brasco Lounge is perfectly placed for city centre workers and visitors alike. The venue has a warm and welcoming interior and windows looking out onto some of the city’s most striking waterfront features, therefore providing a relaxed atmosphere that’s ideal for both socialising and business lunches. Open from 9am until 10pm, from Monday to Sunday, Brasco Lounge offers a varied menu of food for any time of day, from brunch and lunch dishes to classic meals and tapas options. Meanwhile drinks range from coffees, soft drinks and milkshakes to beers, cocktails and wines. Reservations can be made for large parties. For further details visit brasco-lounge.


managing director, ISG Construction This summer Liverpool’s mann island will be at the heart of the international Festival for Business (iFB) when it hosts the hub – a place aimed at facilitating dealmaking amongst delegates during the June and July event. With this in mind, there seemed like no better venue to meet Alan McCarthy-Wyper, ISG Construction’s managing director, than at Mann Island’s laid-back Brasco Lounge. For our meeting we picked a table by the glass frontage of the vibrant venue, looking out onto the docks, which are surrounded by some of the city’s most historic architecture along with its most modern and innovative buildings. We were also a stone’s throw from ISG’s current major development in the city – ACC Liverpool’s 8,100 sq m Exhibition Centre Liverpool (ECL) and accompanying hotel. “The ECL is doing very well,” says Alan, who joined ACC Liverpool’s chief executive, Bob Prattey and 46 MOVE COMMERCIAL

Mayor of Liverpool, Joe Anderson at the waterfront site to see the work get underway in February. “We’ve spent some time with the various stakeholders and the community to get it off the ground. “It’s a good project and something, for the sake of the city, we’re really proud to be able to support.” Although due for completion in 2015, the ECL is neither the beginning nor the end of ISG’s association with Liverpool. The firm has undertaken projects in the city before and, as a national and international company, includes Liverpool amongst its many bases. “We’ve invested heavily into Liverpool and we’ve set up a new office here,” adds Alan. “We’re in this for the long term. We’re not a business that’s trying to do (a project) and then get away so we’re investing in the community, local employment, and there’s a lot going through the local supply chain.” As well as using local suppliers

where possible to help “create wealth for this area,” the ECL scheme is also creating around 1,300 jobs including some apprentices and graduates, as ISG looks to develop its workforce and capability for future projects across the private sector and public sector frameworks that it works on. ISG has also recently showed its support for the city oversees, as Alan attended MIPIM – the annual global property exhibition in Cannes – as part of the Liverpool delegation. Following the event Alan says: “We helped sponsor, as many

We’re investing in the community, local employment, and there’s a lot going through the local supply chain

Alan McCarthy-Wyper

others did, the Liverpool delegation. I think MIPIM is an incredible shop front for many local authorities in the core cities around the country. “With everyone I spoke to, whether it was from the Liverpool delegation, the Manchester delegation or Leeds or whoever, it was very, very encouraging. I think the key message was ‘open for business’.” It’s a message which Liverpool, and the wider region, will keep at the forefront this summer when the IFB welcomes businesses from around the world to network and take part in hundreds of events around the city and, again, Alan is looking forward to the opportunities it will bring for the area. As ISG’s work on the ECL will continue amongst the festivities, Alan insists that the firm will be involved in the IFB in some way as it’s “not a sales event, it is actually an engaging event”. He adds: “There again, that will be something which we’ll be very proud to do because it helps the whole community. It’s about trying to invest in this local community in Liverpool and it’s very, very positive.”



Cliff Maylor chief executive officer, The North West Fund ©Royal Liverpool University Hospital @RoyalLpoolHosps

SUCCESS More than 50% of the £155m North West Fund has been invested to support over 250 SMEs across Cheshire, Cumbria, Lancashire, Greater Manchester and Merseyside. As it makes investments ranging between £50,000 and £2m, the fund helps businesses that are based in or relocating to the region to start, develop and grow. The North West Fund is financed jointly by the European Regional Development Fund and the European Investment Bank, and is managed by a small executive management team which, in turn, is led by an independent board with a non-executive chairman. Chief executive Cliff Maylor, a Liverpool chartered accountant with a strong entrepreneurial background in the SME arena, shares some of The North West Fund’s secrets to success.

How have you successfully recognised the changing needs of North West businesses? “We have tried to keep the structure of The North West Fund as flexible as possible. The six sub-funds all work closely together and we hope that, between our three sector specific funds and the three generalist funds, we are able to cater to the needs of the regions businesses. “Last year we restructured our funding for established, existing businesses. We extended the remit of our Loans Fund and launched our Mezzanine Fund. We recognised that there was a demand amongst the region’s established businesses for more loan or mezzanine finance and many businesses had an aversion to straight equity. “In early 2014 we will also be launching a new sub-fund, specifically tailored to smaller investments. The North West Fund for Micro Loans will offer businesses in the region the option of finance starting from £25,000 up to £50,000. This funding will support growing businesses looking for smaller investments to drive their growth plans and is another example of our recognition of the changing needs and demands of the region’s businesses.

Royal Liverpool Hospital Work is now underway at the new £429m Royal Liverpool Hospital development, which will be the largest hospital in the country when it is complete. We take a look at how the development is shaping up over time:









Are there any particular sectors which have been strong areas for investment? “All three of our sector specific funds (biomedical, energy & environmental and digital & creative) have been popular with businesses in the region. We have been impressed by the quantity and quality of the applications we continue to receive. It’s clear to us that the business and entrepreneurial talent in the North West is incredibly strong across these sectors. “It’s also worth noting that over 20% of the businesses we’ve invested in are manufacturing businesses, many of which are highly innovative and are leading the way for advanced manufacturing in the region. “We have also supported businesses from sectors such as engineering, food and drink and professional services.”




2013 How are you ensuring that your investments will bring growth to the region? “Growth is our key to a ‘successful’ investment; growth for the individual businesses we invest in, growth for the region as a whole and growth for the future. We are not-for-profit, so where some private equity investors will look at ‘gains’ as a result of their investments, our main focus is ‘growth’. “Our fund managers review each application carefully to ensure the management team is capable of growing the business to a sufficient level. “The return we make on our investments in this programme will be re-invested back into the region’s businesses as part of a future funding programme. We hope to create a lasting legacy for the businesses of the North West.”

The government approves Royal Liverpool and Broadgreen University Hospitals Trust’s plans for a £451m redevelopment on an adjacent site.

Carillion is selected as preferred bidder to deliver the Royal Liverpool University Hospital and reveals its plans for the site. It also plans to deliver support services for the new hospital.

A full application submitted at the end of June featuring 18 theatres, 23 wards and 646 single en suite bedrooms.

Appointment Business Case (ABC) for the new Royal approved by the Department of Health. European Investment Bank provides £89m which, together with £94m from the Department of Health and other funding, means around three quarters of the project will be publicly funded.

Plans approved by Liverpool City Council are set to create 750 full-time jobs and 100 apprenticeships during construction.

Carillion announces financial close, and will invest £15.5m of equity. Scottish Widows Investment Partnership will invest a similar amount.


The first hoardings are erected and preparatory work gets underway. The eventual cost will be £429m.


Completion is due. Services will be transferred and the current Royal demolished. The Liverpool BioCampus will then be built, creating 5,000 high tech jobs.


The Old Hall launch Key events

Bruntwood launches The Old Hall Commercial property firm Bruntwood recently celebrated the launch of its new Liverpool event space at the Cotton Exchange. The Old Hall is a 100-capacity, purpose-built venue on the sixth floor of the historic building, located in the heart of the city’s commercial district, and features a vaulted ceiling, original wooden floors and a range of flexible seating arrangements. The launch event not only showcased the venue to customers but also provided a networking opportunity for guests and an update on Bruntwood’s other plans for the Grade II listed Cotton Exchange, which also features a range of office space. Drinks and canapés were served during the evening.


4 6








1. Maria Murphy & nina Roberts. 2. Jonathan Lowe & Joseph venables. 3. Denise Harris & Anne-Louise Bouffard-Roupe. 4. Clare Barber, Stephen Clare & Melissa Dilworth. 5. It was a drinks and canapé reception for guests at old Hall. 6. Matt Lee, Jonathan Lowe, Barry Gregory & Mark Worthington. 7. Matthew Giles, Carl Mitchell, Jamie Phythian & Matthew Ashton. 8. Maureen Sinclair, Colin Farrell & Carli Phillips 9. Kate vokes, marketing and HR director at Bruntwood. 10. Business representatives attend launch of old Hall.

p35-56_Move Commercial 31/03/2014 16:04 Page 49



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Move Commercial Events Apr

EVENT PLANNER Our pick of the best local events



Business Breakfast Networking Event The Innovation Centre, Sci-Tech Daresbury 8 – 9.30am Sponsored by Marks & Clerk, this monthly high-value networking event returns with a chance to connect with entrepreneurs, corporate, universities, support organisations and funding and professional communities.

Free Legal Seminar – We have a new employee starting: What must we consider? The Old Hall, Cotton Exchange, Liverpool 12 – 12.45pm Hosted by Morecrofts’ Charles Millett, this event is aimed at owners and managers of small businesses and will focus on the steps an employer needs to take when appointing new staff.



A Little Taste of....Twitter AEW, Zenith Building, Manchester 8 – 9.30am Women in Property hosts a workshop on the social media tool. There’s also breakfast and a chance to network with fellow industry professionals.

NiP 4 Lunch – North West La Tasca, Cuppin Street, Chester 12.30 – 2.30pm Expand your surveying, property and construction contacts as this lunch network comes to Chester.

World’s best bricklayer to speak at Apprenticeship Graduation A bricklayer dubbed ‘the best in the world’ will honour the region’s apprentices at the inaugural Liverpool City Region Apprenticeship Graduation after agreeing to speak at the ceremony. Ashley Terron, who beat 1,000 other competitors to take the top accolade at the Worldskills (OK) International in Germany in 2012, is the first confirmed speaker at the graduation, which takes place at Liverpool Cathedral on 29 April. The Apprenticeship Graduation is the first of its kind in the North West region and gives apprentices in all areas of industry the same recognition as university graduates. Some 1,000 Level 3 and 4 apprentices who qualified


29 APR Apprenticeships Graduation Liverpool Cathedral Over 1,000 Merseyside apprentices will have their achievements recognised during the Liverpool City Region Apprenticeship Hub’s formal graduation ceremony.

10 APR

11 APR

How to make an effective presentation Hill Dickinson, Old Hall Street, Liverpool 6 – 7.30pm Freelance communications consultant, Andrew Barlow will help transform your presentations and maximise their impact when pitching to new clients at this easy to follow business workshop.

NiP 4 Lunch – North West Stockport Parrs Wood 12.30 – 2.30pm The region’s latest Networking in Property lunch offers an opportunity to meet surveying, property and construction professionals from across the public and private enterprise sectors.

11 APR

24 APR

Grow Your Own Business in Central and Eastern Europe Crewe Hall Hotel 10am – 2pm Hosted by UK Trade & Investment (UKTI) North West, this event aims to show local businesses the range of opportunities on offer in these dynamic markets.

The Social Restaurant Bar and Grill, Liverpool 5 – 7pm Informal networking for property and construction professionals, sponsored by Innov8 Development Solutions, Barnes and Coresafe Consulting. Email lindsey.fallon@innov8ds. com to attend.

Waterfront conference confirmed for IFB

Ashley Terron

in 2012/13 will be recognised at the event. Ashley says: “I am thrilled to have been asked to speak at this exciting, new event for apprentices. As a former apprentice at Warrington College myself, I understand the hard work that has to be put in to achieve your qualification and to excel at your chosen skill.”

Speakers from Copenhagen, Shanghai and New York will gather in Liverpool to discuss waterfront regeneration and promotion in the latest event planned as part of the 2014 International Festival for Business (IFB). The first ever Liverpool International Waterfront Forum will take place at Tate Liverpool on 19 June, when the visiting keynote speakers will take part in a conference focused on Liverpool and the world’s leading waterfronts. The new forum will coincide with the ‘Cities, Enterprise and urban Business’ week of the IFB and will also include a series of smaller events on 18 and 19 June at venues along Liverpool’s waterfront. Sue Grindrod, event chair of the Liverpool Waterfront Business Partnership CIC (LWBP), which is hosting the forum, says: “We are proud to be hosting the inaugural Liverpool International Waterfront Forum and see this as a further sign that Liverpool is rightfully retaking its place alongside other global waterfront cities. Liverpool is no longer a city that can only learn about regeneration from other cities, but one that has a positive story which other cities in the world now wish to hear.” For more information on the event visit

Potential apprentice graduates have been sent a letter explaining how to secure a free ticket, plus two guests, to the event. Employers who would like their apprentices recognised at the ceremony can email for more information. LWBP members with IFB organisers


Stephen Hurrell

MIPIM, the world’s leading real estate event for property professionals, welcomed 24,000 visitors to the Palais des Festivals in Cannes over four days from 11 – 14 March. Nearly 2,000 exhibitors attended the event from 79 countries to promote cities in front of over 4,000 investors.

North West triumphs at MIPIM 2014

The big takeaway from MIPIM 2014 was the general optimism in the marketplace.


FoR THE noRTH WEST, it was a chance to promote major infrastructure and commercial property schemes and join forces in an unprecedented tie-in between the Liverpool and Manchester delegations. Dan Innes, managing director at Innesco, says: “This year proved to be one of the best and buoyant for several years - if not back to the pre-recession years - and made even better by celebrating MIPIM's 25th anniversary with fireworks and jazz through the week. The British contingent at this year’s MIPIM rose by over 20 % on last year to 4,000 making the Brits the second largest contingent at MIPIM after the French - and we Brits do like to make a noise! “The big takeaway from MIPIM 2014 was the general optimism in the marketplace, born out by a KPMG report showing that investment appetite into “opportunistic strategies” was up

10% on last year. This was evident all around the Palais de Festivals in the bustling city stands, corporate exhibitions and different countries displaying their wares but despite this it was still noted there was too little product available on the market compared to the investment on offer pushing up bidding prices and making competition intense.”

Liverpool’s return A delegation from Liverpool returned to MIPIM for the first time since 2011 and the event was used as a platform to promote the International Festival for Business (IFB), which will take place in the city in June and July. Mayor Joe Anderson and Liverpool vision chief executive, Max Steinberg attended the event alongside a selection of Merseyside businesses. The Liverpool team comprised 14 companies including

Brabners, Bruntwood, Deloitte, Countryside Properties and Grosvenor. Liverpool held a dedicated IFB dinner, where guest speaker Liz Peace, chief executive of the British Property Federation, and Mayor Joe Anderson discussed the forthcoming 50-day festival. Colin Sinclair of Bruntwood says: “Liverpool’s appearance at MIPIM was a great example of the public sector backing a private sector initiative. Liverpool City Council and Liverpool vision gave heavyweight support to the return to MIPIM and although it is early days it has been seen as a triumph. “City brands have the greatest resonance when you are winning investments from abroad and Manchester is recognised globally from many years of attendance at MIPIM. City brands need to be in a global position in the post-recession uK economy. It is vital Liverpool is a part of that and a lot of credit has to go to

Cities take the global stage MIPIM

It was particularly great to see the collaboration between Liverpool and Manchester promoting the wider North West region

“ Mayor Joe Anderson and his team.” Bruntwood used the occasion to announce its purchase of the former AstraZeneca site at Alderley Park as part of Manchester Science Parks. Colin says: “MIPIM was very good for us. A lot of work went in to completing the deal and getting the legal side done so that we could launch the acquisition at MIPIM.”

Teaming up Meanwhile, the 19,054 sq m Manchester stand saw delegates and 46 partner organisations gather to promote the city’s growth. The city appeared at 21 events covering topics such as Airport City and investment in Manchester. The Manchester delegation included an appearance by former Manchester united and England footballer Gary neville, who is currently behind the ‘Hotel Football’ scheme near to old Trafford football ground. He spoke at an event titled

‘My Manchester – A Personal Perspective on the City’. MIPIM 2014 saw Liverpool Mayor Joe Anderson and Manchester City Council chief executive, Sir Howard Bernstein team up to promote the region in the unique ‘Back to the Future – unlocking the Investment Potential of Liverpool and Manchester’. The event was chaired by Baroness Susan Williams, executive director of the Atlantic Gateway Partnership, and looked at the investment potential of the two cities at a breakfast meeting. Max Steinberg says: “During the course of the last year, we have established a closer working relationship with Manchester particularly through a series of important projects that can bring economic benefit to both cities. “our joint event at MIPIM reflects the desire for the two cities to work together and both cities’ leaders are firm in their

commitment to presenting the investment opportunities in the wider geographical area.” Dan Innes added: “It was particularly great to see the collaboration between Liverpool and Manchester promoting the wider north West region. “For the north West there was plenty of talk of growth,

distribution, logistics, job creation, and how both councils are keen to work with private investors in the region. This is all a bright green light for great business in the years to come, and with investor eyes looking more and more outside of London, the picture for the regions is looking stronger than ever.” MOVE COMMERCIAL 53

Expert views Ask the panel

What impact will the 2014 Budget have on the North West? When Chancellor George Osborne delivered his fifth Budget, he declared it would “back businesses who invest and export,” and “support manufacturers and back all regions of our country”. Now that his economic plans have been unveiled, we ask four experts about how the region will be affected.

Public borrowing in the UK still remains at precarious levels and despite reports of growth, the country has got no option but to continue tightening its belt. So it was no surprise to hear nothing in the Chancellor’s speech towards reform of the punitively lucrative business rates system, other than by reference to market distorting Enterprise Zones. However, with the largest manufacturing base in the UK, a burgeoning digital data sector and an increasingly significant contribution to the country’s export economy, the North West should see significant opportunity from other announcements in Osborne’s fifth budget.  The value of helping businesses invest in their own growth cannot be underestimated, so doubling capital investment allowances on corporation tax together with announcing measures to deal with increasing energy costs, were both welcome news for the region’s industrial and digital-data economies. Also, improved finance for exporters will further enhance opportunity for the region’s manufacturers to be more competitive. Positive results from these initiatives will deliver real net economic growth for the region. Wayne Locke, managing director, Locke Property Investments

Like those in the rest of the country, businesses in the North West have been badly hit by business rates following the government's decision to delay the planned revaluation until 2017. We were disappointed that the Chancellor did not address these concerns in his Budget. The recent announcement by the Department for Communities and Local Government of up to £1,000pa reduction for business rates on retail premises with rateable values of £50,000 or less represents an acknowledgement of a problem but not a long-term solution. However the extension of business rates discounts and Enterprise Zone capital allowances is to be welcomed. We are seeing more activity in the market, and we hope that the banks will continue to support SME investment in our sector both for owner occupiers and investors. Residential land development is still hampered by the speed of the

The increase in annual investment tax allowances to £500,000, additional research and development of tax credit incentives and the reduction in carbon tax to reduce energy costs should help businesses in our region

planning processes and the effect of Budget measures in this area is not likely to be positive until local authorities catch up. We were however delighted to see support for the Mersey Gateway Bridge and the continuation of Help to Buy. Eric Wright retail specialist and arbitrator, Hitchcock Wright and Partners

and in turn create more jobs. This will be further boosted by the newly available National Insurance incentives of up to £2,000 for all employers, and the removal of NIC for all those aged under 21. The guaranteed £270m funding for the Mersey Gateway, which promoters believe will secure the overall financing of the project, and the extension of 100% capital allowances and business rate discounts in Enterprise Zones (four of which are here in the North West) are also welcome investment into our region. Finally the move to allow pensioners to access the whole of their pension fund may boost the local economy as more and more pensioners set sail from our wonderful Liverpool cruise terminal. Louise Howard, tax director, Mazars LLP

Chancellor George Osborne’s 2014 Budget is expected to kick-start the economy with a GDP forecast growth of 2.7% in 2014. So what does this mean for business in the North West? For a start, the government has introduced grants for small businesses with a view of taking on 100,000 more apprentices. Coupled with plans to support the building of 200,000 new homes and the Help to Buy equity scheme extended to 2020, the North West is expected to see an increase in the construction industry. The government has also increased the rate of tax credits for research and development for small companies from 11% to 14.5%. This will help small businesses starting out that often make losses in their first year of trading. The government is also set to abolish National Insurance contributions for the young. Meanwhile, the Chancellor announced a £270m guarantee for the Mersey Gateway Bridge. The £600m project is set to be completed in 2017 and is expected to promote business regeneration in the area. Joe Davison, employment expert, Paul Crowley & Co Solicitors

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Move Commercial 36  

The north west's guide to property and business

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