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ISSUE Nº 2 M AY 2 0 1 8 MANCHESTER

FEATURING:

INTRODUCING... 20 STORIES ST. MICHAEL’S WHERE THE WALLS TALK, AKSE INTERVIEWS WITH:

ARIAN KALANTARI, LADBIBLE MATT BIRD, WE ARE GNTLMEN

TRANSFORMATION OF AN ICON AN OBI PROPERTY PUBLICATION

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THEME

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Welcome to the second edition of OBI Journal. When we launched this concept in late 2017, we remarked on how a property consultancy publishing a magazine was unusual, but could serve a useful purpose. The welcome it received showed us that our thinking had been right, that another way of sharing intelligence and insights with our clients, partners and other businesses would be beneficial. As we said back then, OBI are here to provide you with the best of our knowledge in the real estate sphere: you’re good at what you do, and we’re good at what we do. Being able to provide end-to-end real estate solutions for you — the OBI Difference — is what sets us apart. And this journal is an extension of that. We’re looking to provide informative, useful and hopefully entertaining content. Some of it is specifically related to the work we do, such as updates on the local market, how major real estate projects are progressing, companies we’re working with as they expand and flourish. Quite a lot of it isn’t property-related at all — and you’ll find here interviews and features on retail, artists, music venues, the fashion industry and other things that help make Manchester what it is. We hope you enjoy the journal and look forward to hearing your thoughts via social media, or as we meet in the ever-bustling circuit of business events. What would you like to see in future editions? Let us know — as ever, we’re keen to talk. 1


EDITOR IN CHIEF

CGI'S

Will Lewis

Revere 3D

CREATIVE DIRECTOR

CONTRIBUTORS

Ashley Ashcroft

Andrew Crompton

CONTRIBUTING EDITOR

THANKS

Neil Tague

To everyone who has given their time to be interviewed, or has spoken at an OBI event.

DESIGN

Márcio Sá PHOTOGRAPHERS

Paul Wilson Márcio Sá David Lake Photography Karen Wright VIDEOS

Paul Wilson ILLUSTRATION (JOE AVERIL)

Cristina Valadas

ISSUE NO. 2 MAY 2018 OBI Journal is published bi-annually by OBI PROPERTY obiproperty.co.uk @obiproperty © 2018 OBI PROPERTY All rights reserved.


Welcome Manchester in 2018 remains a fast-moving, exciting place to do business, with the volume of major deals in the first quarter of the year, and key projects making progress through planning, combining to highlight a city that is both confident in itself, and a city that has won the confidence of global players. With this, our second OBI Journal, we hope to shine a light on some of the facets of business in Manchester. People are at the heart of what makes the city special, and here we hope to share some stories from the entrepreneurs, retailers, hospitality operators and others that all contribute to making this a great city to work and live in. OBI as a business continues to grow amidst this and we continue to explore new directions and partnerships, more of which you can read about in the following pages. It is the desire to support our partners and clients in every way we can that drives OBI, and underpins every investment we make. We’re constantly building our intelligence and looking for new ways to share that intelligence with you — in person, digitally, at our OBI Insights events, and here in print. Nowadays, time is more pressured than ever and information comes from all angles. We know that. But we also know from feedback received on our first edition that people value something that offers some insights and fresh perspectives on Manchester in 2018. We’d like to highlight the contributions made by Márcio Sá and Ashley Ashcroft, two key members of our OBI team, in making this happen. It remains our pleasure to bring to you the OBI Journal.

Will Lewis


CONTENT

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OBI’S EXPERTS ON DEALS, DEVELOPMENTS, AND WHAT TO EXPECT IN THE COMING MONTHS

THE OPPORTUNITIES AND CHALLENGES AROUND DIVERSITY IN MANCHESTER’S TECH SECTOR

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THE HOTTEST AND HIGHEST NEW RESTAURANT IN THE CITY IS OPEN FOR BUSINESS

HOW CREARIVES TOOK CONTROL TO STEER MANCHESTER’S FUTURE

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FOOD, DRINK AND SHOPPING WITH A DIFFERENCE ON OXFORD ROAD

WHAT INSPIRES AND DRIVES THE LADBIBLE CO-FOUNDER

office market review

introducing… 20 Stories

introducing… hatch

diversity event report

the making of modern manchester

interview: arian kalantari

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state of independence LOW-DOWN ON THE NORTHERN QUARTER NAMES YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT

cover story: transformation of an icon HOW THE EXPRESS BUILDING IS BEING REINVENTED FOR THE 21ST CENTURY

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interview: matt bird THE WE ARE GNTLMEN FASHION ENTREPRENEUR ON MAKING IT IN MANCHESTER

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closing in on clerkenwell MANCHESTER’S DESIGN SCENE UPS ITS GAME


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HOW THE OBI DIFFERENCE IS PAYING OFF FOR THE DIGITAL AGENCY

OBI SUPPORTS MANCHESTER CHARITY WITH TWO MAJOR EVENTS

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st. michael's

meet the team

MANCHESTER’S MOST AMBITIOUS NEW PROJECT PROFILED

JOE AVERILL GOES UNDER THE SPOTLIGHT

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mipim report

news

OBI ON THE TRIAL OF INDUSTRY INTELLIGENCE AT THE CANNES EVENT

BITE-SIZED UPDATES ON KEY OBI PROJECTS

design focus: e3 creative

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introducing: akse

factory youth zone

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events ESSENTIALS IN THE MANCHESTER BUSINESS CALENDAR

THE STREET ARTIST BEHIND SOME FAMILIAR MANCHESTER IMAGES

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going live THE LIVE MUSIC VENUES KEEPING THE CITY BUZZING

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For Reservations: 0161 832 3818 reservations@menagerierestaurant.co.uk www.menagerierestaurant.co.uk

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menagerierestaurant


at Menagerie Restaurant & Bar Manchester’s newest vibrant dining concept… MENAGERIE DINING 7 DAYS A WEEK Brunch / Lunch / Afternoon Tea / Sunday Roast /Dinner / Drinks / Late Night Party

MENAGERIE EXPERIENCE World class performers entertain live from the catwalk every Thursday, Friday, Saturday & Sunday

MENAGERIE EVENTS From Fashion Shows to business networking the 250 cover restaurant and bar regularly plays host to special events. OPEN Noon -1am Sunday - Thursday Noon - 2am Friday and Saturday

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OFFICE MARKET REVIEW

manchester — market on the move OBI HAS BEEN UNDERTAKING DETAILED ANALYSIS OF THE MANCHESTER WORKSPACE MARKET SINCE 2010. HERE ARE SOME HIGHLIGHTS FROM OUR LATEST MARKET REPORT.

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TRANSPORT

THE MARKET

— getting better

— Grade A fills up

One of the key challenges in making sure Manchester’s progress continues on an upward curve is transport infrastructure, and 2017 saw significant progress — the Second City Crossing has added capacity and robustness to the Metrolink tram network, while the Ordsall Chord’s completion lays the foundation for vastly improved

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he last year and a half have seen Manchester challenged. There has been change at the top, with Sir Howard Bernstein leaving Manchester City Council after a period of sustained success stretching back two decades.

In April 2017 he was succeeded in the Town Hall by new chief executive Joanne Roney, while Greater Manchester also now has a Metro Mayor, with Andy Burnham becoming the first to take that office the following month.

rail connections to key partner cities across the North. The redevelopment of Manchester Airport and Airport City made major strides. There has been further encouragement in the early part of 2018, with tangible progress made in the development of Manchester Piccadilly as a multi-modal station that will house both HS2 capability south to Birmingham and London but have increased capacity on Transpennine through-routes, all linked to the existing station by a multi-level concourse with new retail and additional passenger facilities. All this is important because Manchester needs to build capacity in to it’s infrastructure, not just transport but housing and social infrastructure too, because the city continues to grow and win inward investment.

The city centre market in 2017 saw around 1.2 million sq ft of accommodation transacted, as Manchester continued to outperform its regional rivals. In 2017, the standout statistic was that tech, digital and creative businesses accounted for 35% of market activity. We expect this trend to continue on an upward curve in 2018.

The first quarter of 2018 has given us reason to retain a positive outlook on the market and occupational demand levels. In fact, based on the same period last year take up more than doubled from 205,000 sq ft in Q1 2017 to 440,000 sq ft in Q1 2018. The 157,000 sq ft pre-let agreed with the GPU / HMRC accounted for a large part of this take up but underlying demand across the city remains strong. With approximately one year’s supply of prime Grade A space available and with no new development due to be delivered until mid-2019, it is expected that the vast majority of the existing prime Grade A stock will be absorbed during 2018. Pent up demand will also see a large proportion of the new build accommodation due for delivery in 2019 securing commitments from occupiers in advance of completion. H

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OFFICE MARKET REVIEW

As the Grade A supply pipeline becomes increasingly shallow, occupiers with requirements in excess of 30,000 sq ft will have limited new build options to consider. Refurbished accommodation will, as a result, be the main source of supply for these occupiers. In 2018, the city centre refurbishment pipeline will see the delivery of over 800,000 sq ft of accommodation. This pipeline provides variety in terms of size, specification and price point and we do not envisage that the lack of new build Grade A accommodation will stifle take up during the course of the year. Handelsbanken (40,000 sq ft), Amazon (50,000 — 80,000 sq ft), and Moneysupermarket.com

(35,000 sq ft) are just some of the occupiers currently considering refurbished options. The depth of supply of office accommodation in the city centre will be key to attracting further inward investors to Manchester. Historically, many of the inward investment transactions to have taken place have appeared on the horizon just 6 to 9 months before the business has needed to be operational. Agreeing a pre-let on a new build development is often not an option that can be considered.

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PREDICTIONS Time

diverse employment pool offered by Manchester. This may act as a catalyst to these occupiers making longer term commitments to the city in conventional space.

We expect to see a headline rent of £35.00 per sq ft secured in the first half of 2018 and due to a shortage of supply, some buildings, such as No.1 Spinningfields or 2 St Peter’s Square, could push beyond this. However, the number of transactions achieving these headline rents will remain limited relative to the total number of transactions completed.

With other co-working operators starting to establish a presence in the city including OurSpace and Work.Life, occupiers will be presented with genuine alternatives to taking conventional office space. We expect that office lettings sub2,500 sq ft will see a continued reduction during 2018 as some occupiers take this route.

The arrival of WeWork in Manchester on the back of other co-working providers such as Headspace in 2016 marks a step change in the size and quality of flexible workspace available in the city centre.

“Space as a Service” is a key theme — those landlords with multi-let assets that look to sacrifice Net Internal Area and provide ‘third’ or amenity spaces will stand the best chance of competing with these managed

WeWork’s first operation at No.1 Spinningfields opened in late 2017, and the design-led workspace and space-as-a-service management approach has been well received.

workspace providers. In 2018, the RICS will need to adapt their approach to assessing the value of these third spaces - whilst they may not directly generate income they will be responsible for creating value through improved user experience.

It is our belief that WeWork opening in Manchester may act as a “pullfactor” for some of their existing customers from London and other global cities with a WeWork presence. Having an existing relationship and corporate agreements in place, and the ability for these customers to work within a familiar environment, will allow them to quickly and easily open up exposure to the wide and

We are seeing an increase in the amount of space transacted and number of transactions attributed to tech-enabled businesses. Many of these business have been on a strong growth trajectory and can employ over 100 people within 2 to 3 years of their inception. To capitalise on this demand those landlords who are


‘front facing’ and look to establish strong relationships with these companies in the early years will have the greatest potential to benefit from their growth. The approach to assessing the covenant strength of a business by applying the traditional profits test, does not capture the complete picture when considering the financial standing of a business. The majority of fast-growing tech companies will seek to reinvest all of their profits in the early years and raise investment, as they maximise the growth of the business and development of the tech platforms upon which they are built. Landlords should take the time to fully understand the businesses they are engaging with, in order to properly consider the risk and reward potential of starting out on a Landlord and Tenant relationship together. The ability to offer an occupier growth space, lease flexibility and an engaging working environment will allow long term relationships to be built. Manchester has a wide and varied business community and we expect the city centre to continue to attract healthy demand from occupiers in and out of the North West region as well as seeing continued growth from indigenous Manchester business and starts ups.

1.2 MILLION SQ FT LET IN 2017

35% OF 2017 DEALS WERE IN THE TECH, DIGITAL AND CREATIVE SECTORS.

Q1 TAKE UP IN 2018 MORE THAN DOUBLED FROM Q1 2017 WITH A 112% INCREASE TO 441,000 SQ FT

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FOOD & DRINK

20 stories

NO. 1 SPINNINGFIELDS HAS A FOOD AND DRINK OFFER WORTHY OF ITS STATUS AS MANCHESTER’S BEST NEW BUILDING

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ituated on the 19h floor of No.1 Spinningfields, D&D London’s 20 Stories launched on 1 March 2018, bringing a glamourous fine dining restaurant, a more relaxed grill, lively bar, and a beautiful roof garden with unparalleled views of the Manchester city skyline.

Aiden Byrne’s modern British menus celebrate local produce, with fresh vegetables coming directly from the restaurant’s own farm in Cheshire, and meat sourced from small suppliers throughout Lancashire, Cheshire and Yorkshire.

The launch of 20 Stories brought out Manchester’s great and good, with stars of Coronation Street, TV chefs, presenters, footballers and star musicians there in force for the most talked-about party of the year D&D operates some of London’s most celebrated restaurants, such as Quaglino’s, Le Pont de la Tour, Chelsea’s famous Bluebird and City favourite Coq d’Argent. The group also own Alcazar in Paris and Guastavino’s in New York. H

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FOOD & DRINK

The pulling power of the hospitality giant and chef Aiden Byrne’s celebrated culinary style was evident as 400 of Manchester’s most influential movers and shakers turned out to celebrate the opening of Manchester’s highest restaurant. 20 Stories features an especially commissioned artwork featuring a roll call of the most talked-about, most powerful and best-known faces behind the continued growth of modern Manchester. (SEE ON PAGE 12-13)

It has been designed and put together by renowned art collective Nomad Clan — female artists Cbloxx and AYLO — who together are an internationally-acclaimed, street-art muralist duo based in Manchester. The 8ft x 4ft The Chef’s Table painting takes inspiration from Leonardo Da Vinci’s world-famous late 15th Century artwork The Last Supper and features 20 of the most influential people in modern Manchester seated around a single dining table. H

20 Stories f NO. 1 Spinningfields 1 Hardman Square, Manchester, M3 3EB

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FOOD & DRINK

Chef Director Aiden Byrne said: "I am thrilled to be launching this new venture with D&D London. The different food we are serving in the restaurant and grill means that we have something for everyone. I am equally passionate about the styles of food in both restaurant and grill — what matters to me is that they share the same ethos and integrity."

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FOOD & DRINK

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hatch of the day MODERN URBAN RETAIL IS ALL ABOUT BEING DISTINCTIVE. HATCH ON MANCHESTER’S OXFORD ROAD IS CERTAINLY THAT

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new retail and leisure pitch on one of Manchester’s busiest roads, Hatch opened in January 2018 with the aim of bringing vibrant, independent food, drink, shopping and leisure to a key part of the Corridor Manchester innovation district, Like BoxPark in Shoreditch, and offices in Manchester’s Sharp Project, Hatch uses shipping containers — easily installed, relatively cheap to run, the advantages are obvious. Billed as more of a semi-permanent project than a “pop-up” market, it is part of Bruntwood’s Circle Square project to reanimate and redevelop the former BBC studios and its surrounds.

Independent food and drink outlets the Blue Caribou Canteen, Eat & Sweet, El Marchador Tacos, Takk and Öl Brewery Bar were the original traders, being joined in

March by three retailers: florist The Beehive, organic wine trader Love & Laboutr, and gift and stationery store Nonsense, which will also be holding kids’ craft events. Hatch is operated and managed by the team behind Bruntwood’s independent shopping hub Afflecks. Toby Sproll, head of Bruntwood retail, said: “It’s fantastic to see Hatch coming to life and this is only the beginning of what is set to become one of Manchester’s most unique places to eat, drink and shop. We have plans to set up a regular events and entertainment programme, with DJs now in residence on Friday and Saturday nights. It’s key for us to keep things fresh so people can enjoy something new on a regular basis here at Hatch.

e Hatch Oxford Rd, Manchester, M1 7ED www.hatchmcr.com

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FOOD THEME & DRINK

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We look forward to watching Hatch grow and are confident it will be taken to the hearts of Mancunians and visitors alike.” Hatch is all about bringing life and colour to what’s always been a fairly humdrum stretch of the city — the Mancunian Way, vital though it is, slicecs noisily over Oxford Road, posing a placemaking challenge. Down the years the masses of people walking to or from the university campuses, hospital and science park have tended to hurry through. With a buzzing new place to eat, drink and shop, the dynamic is changing. As with GRUB at Piccadilly, the Church Street markets and regular Friday events in Piccadilly Gardens, the people of the city have shown they want something a bit different, an alternative from the chains.

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Bruntwood began the transformation of the area in October 2017 and expects to grow to a total of over 30 units in 2018. Sproll added: “Hatch continues to come to life. Whether customers are looking to try out a new kind of street food or find the perfect gift, Hatch has something for everyone.

There are loads more exciting things to come in the months ahead and by the summer Hatch will be full to the brim of exciting places for people to discover.”

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RETAIL

state of independents MANCHESTER’S NORTHERN QUARTER HAS THE BARS, CAFÉS, SHOPS AND STUDIOS THAT MAKE IT THE MOST MANCUNIAN OF THE CITY CENTRE’S VARIOUS DISTRICTS. WE TOOK A TRIP AROUND THE STREETS TO CAPTURE THE FLAVOUR

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Smithfield Market area saw wholesalers and retailers alike supplying meat, fish, fruit and vegetables to the region’s shops and shoppers alike.

Oldham Street, Tib Street, High Street and Church Street were all bustling with shoppers, while the

In the years following those days, the Northern Quarter — although yet to be christened that — established a reputation as Manchester’s bohemian quarter, with Affleck’s Palace being the centre of all things quirky. The Dry Bar, opened by Factory Records as a far-out, somewhat calmer cousin to the Hacienda, was a pioneer,

he Northern Quarter is the area that gives Manchester much of its identity. Historically, dating back to the 20-something years of post-War reconstruction that saw the Arndale Centre built and the centre of the city’s retail gravity move towards Market Street, it was the hub of the city, with the major department stores of the day joining with smaller local retailers.

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and along with venues such as Night & Day Café led to the area growing an identity. It’s an identity that grew through the 1990s and early 2000s, with a subtle guiding hand from the council — public art, a style of signage different to the rest of the city — as Manchester grew into a confident, modern European city. These are just a few of the stories within those streets.


TAKK Where the part of the Northern Quarter close to the Arndale is all hustle and bustle, the side closer to Piccadilly is a little more austere (until the bars are busy anyway), with business being done in former cotton warehouses — there’s many a digital consultancy and creative agency based in these parts. Takk brings a touch of Scandinavian cool to the coffee scene and is busy at any time of day. There are Scandi art, design and travel books, large wooden tables and, it almost goes without saying for such a popular ‘third space’ workplace, free Wi-fi. > 6 TARIFF STREET WWW.TAKKMCR.COM

TREK BICYCLE The Northern Quarter is independent in spirit, but it has come of age and an iconic international cycle brand such as Trek basing a store and maintenance centre in the area is proof enough that there’s business in the area. Store manager Liam tells us that the CycleFit Manchester store was opened three years ago, with Trek taking it on as its Manchester dealership in April 2017. Manchester’s leadership is now increasingly bold on its ambitions to reduce reliance on car journeys, with the citys cycling and walking commissioner, Olympian Chris Boardman calling in December 2017 for a £1.5bn investment in cycling infrastructure. The future is on two wheels. > 41 NEWTON STREET WWW.TREKBIKES.COM

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RETAIL

PICCADILLY RECORDS A Manchester institution, Piccadilly Records moved from Piccadilly Plaza to Brown Street in 1990, before settling on Oldham Street’s Smithfield Buildings in 1997. Piccadilly is an influencer, its Record Store Day events proving magnetic and its End of Year Review being a must for music fans seeking something new. The music industry is reinventing itself, with a 25-year high in UK vinyl sales recorded last year, and Piccadilly, along with NQ neighbours Vinyl Revival, Eastern Bloc and others, is attracting a whole new audience. > 53 OLDHAM STREET WWW.PICCADILLYRECORDS.COM

BEERMOTH Resident in the unit formerly home to menswear icon Oi Polloi, Beermoth has been trading in the Northern Quarter since February 2013, since which time it has branched out to add a popular café bar in Brown Street. The UK craft ale scene continues to flourish, and palates grow ever more curious for different beer styles from around the world, leading Beermoth to become a magnet for enthusiasts, offering Manchester’s best range of beers from home and abroad. > 70 TIB STREET WWW.BEERMOTH.CO.UK

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FRED ALDOUS ART & CRAFT SUPPLIES The legendary arts and crafts supplier has been in business since 1886 and has been at Stevenson Square since the 1950s, although it expanded recently with an airy ground floor space to welcome in more punters. The group has expanded to Leeds now but this remains the HQ, now covering 25,000 sq ft over three floors, with arts, crafts, modelling, gifts and haberdashery, along with studios for photography and printing. Downstairs is an Aladdin’s cave of paints, cloths and haberdashery materials. Where else has an aisle dedicated to ‘glitter and feathers’? > 37 LEVER STREET WWW.FREDALDOUS.CO.UK

MAGMA You can sum up what a visitor might expect to find at Magam as “cool stuff”. Basically, it sells prints and artwork, books, magazines and gift items, but the secret is that it’s a beautifully curated collection — the kid of shop you can wander into and lose yourself in what you find. At the heart of the Northern Quarter, this shop, with staff as helpful as you’ll find anywhere, is a treasure trove. Keep an eye out for special events with brands such as hip football mag Mundial. > 24 OLDHAM STREET WWW.MAGMA-SHOP.COM

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RETAIL

JERK SHACK The Church Street market stalls are a part of the heart and soul of the city, and although the days when barrowboys would be thick on the ground here — only McCalls is left in the recently revamped market booths — it’s still a hive of activity. Those who head to the Northern Quarter for lunch at any of the area’s famous “rice and three” curry cafes have found a tasty alternative in Jerk Shack, which opened in 2015, offerings hungry punters wholesome, filling Caribbean food that can break through the chilliest of Manchester days. It has secured a loyal following. > 12 CHURCH STREET WWW.FACEBOOK.COM/JERKSHACKNQ

RICHARD GOODALL GALLERY Over the years, the Goodall gallery became known as “the” place to go if you wanted super-stylish silk screen prints or posters of your favourite cult movie or band. The gallery continues to welcome in the punters to its Thomas Street base, which also features Northern Quarter Framing downstairs. If the mass market is not for you, and you want something different, check out some of the artists’ work that is showcased in this place, an asset to the region. > 59 THOMAS STREET WWW.RICHARDGOODALLGALLERY.COM

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OI POLLOI Manchester has long prided itself as a pioneering fashion city. Like its neighbour and rival Liverpool, a fair amount of its population carry something close to an obsession with looking the part. Oi Polloi, headed by Nigel Lawson and Steve Sunderland, has long been regarded as the most cutting-edge of Manchester’s menswear shops. In recent years it has branched out to London, and has released collaboration pieces with some of the world’s coolest designers of clothing and footwear. > 63 THOMAS STREET WWW.OIPOLLOI.COM

©CHRIS BAKER

COTTONOPOLIS Styled as a Japanese-inspired restaurant and bar set in a Grade II-listed building, Cottonopolis Food & Liquor has become a firm favourite in recent years. Along with neighbours such as Tariff & Dale and Pen & Pencil, it has made the Piccadilly side of the NQ crackle with energy once the evenings roll around. A fine selection of craft ales, a smartly-created menu, funky cocktails, and decent tunes. It’s no wonder this place is proving to be a winner. > NEWTON STREET WWW.COTTONOPOLIS-NQ.COM

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FASHION

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a matter for gentlemen MANCHESTER’S A CITY WITH TEXTILES AND CLOTHING IN ITS DNA. BRANDS ARE BORN HERE, BRANDS FLOURISH HERE. WE SPOKE TO MATT BIRD, FOUNDER AND CEO OF WE ARE GNTLMEN

How did you start We Are Gntlmen?

We Are Gntlmen was initially created in 2013 as ‘Gentlemen Clothing’ from my spare bedroom in a little town in Shropshire. I had recently finished working in the music industry and when that ended, I knew I wanted ‘something of my own’. One night, after watching 30 seconds of a well known reality TV show, I thought to myself ‘Whatever happened to being a Gentleman?!’ The brand concept was born and I looked at my next interest, clothes, as a way of delivering that message. I initially started with t-shirts, with our now signature penny farthing logo embroidered onto the left breast. I borrowed a sewing machine, built a basic website and started selling my t-shirts to friends and family.

Over the years since, I’ve learnt so much about the industry from manufacturing to marketing. I’ve always said that I wanted to build a brand and not just another clothing company. We introduced our first shirt in 2014, with another three being introduced in early 2015. Around 60% of revenue was generated from these shirts, so in 2016, we re-focussed, redesigned and re-launched as We Are Gntlmen, with a core focus on smart-casual shirting for the modern, creative professional man. Fast forward nearly two years and we’re selling to customers in 20 countries and have seen a 2000% sales growth with our retail partner The Chapar. H

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FASHION THEME

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Can you talk us through

Why Manchester?

the product range?

Our core focus is now on shirting, so they drive all of our sales. We chose to name our shirts after cool and heritage British names that all had further meaning. All of our shirt names reflect a personality or a behaviour that our brand stands for. Victor, our Oxford shirt is the best seller. Currently available in white or pale blue, it’s a staple for any man’s wardrobe. Our fit, combined with superior quality and attention to detail really entices our customer to purchase one. I’ve received countless emails from happy customers, explaining that the shirt generates conversation and compliments from their friends, colleagues and peers. All of our shirts are what I like to call ‘elegantly casual’. They are versatile and can be worn on many an occasion. We’ve created our own fit, which is in-between a slim and tailored fit product. Our brand is all about subtlety so we place logos on cuffs or embroider them tonally, the same colour as the fabric.

Any plans for new product in 2018?

I still want to keep the focus on our smart-casual shirt offering. We’re building a brand reputation and loyal customer base on the quality, fit, feel and detail on these shirts. Over the next 12 months, we’ll increase our range, sizing and variety but we’ll start to include complementary items. We already do a small collection of knitwear, which we’ll continue to do. We’ll introduce some basics, t-shirts, underwear etc and also a small range of leather accessories. These will all compliment the shirts and will further build the brand visual and aesthetic.

I decided to base the business in Manchester in 2016. I wanted to put myself and the business in an environment where I could be surrounded by people on the same journey, who could help me and who could introduce me to people. Although our business is based online, I think location is important. I love Manchester (apart from the rain!) and the heritage of the clothing and fashion industry from here helped me make my my decision. The support I’ve had from people around the city has been phenomenal whilst trying to get the business really off the ground. Everyone is so helpful, resourceful and we have a lot of customers around the city now who really help spread the word.

Talk us through the driving principles of the brand

I believe that a brand is more than a product, it’s an emotional connection and I knew I needed something that people could relate to and have an opinion on. I want to re-invent the true gentleman and make the lifestyle the go-to for current and future generations. I feel modern influences through social media and TV can sometimes encourage a nonsustainable lifestyle and not one of quality. Being a gentleman doesn’t mean reverting back to 1920, we believe that every man in a modern world should be honest, kind, well mannered, chivalrous and well dressed. We have a motto that ‘when you look good, you feel good and when you feel good, you’ll do good!” We want everything to represent those points without becoming too cheesy or novel. H

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FASHION

And you've looked at crowdfunding?

Every business at some point needs capital to grow. I started the business with under £2,000 from my savings and we’ve done everything pretty organically up to now. We’ve been growing steadily and proving routes to market and customer demand so raising money is the right thing to do. Crowdfunding was a multi-purpose idea for us. I thought it would be a great way to raise the funds that we needed from a number of people who liked the brand, but also to generate new custom and increase our brand awareness and although our crowdfunding campaign ultimately failed, the opportunities that have arisen because of it have been incredible. Our investment will be used in a couple of areas, but most importantly, we want to recruit local talent to help us grow our brand to its full potential. We’ve been speaking to plenty of investors since launching on Crowdcube so I’m still confident that we can execute our growth plans this year.

Who are the people or brands you admire, or are inspired by?

There are so many people and companies that I look at for inspiration. I really like the journey of Gymshark and how they’ve grown from screen printing t-shirts in a bedroom to now turning over c.£50m in the space of 4 or 5 years. It’s just incredible looking at the community they’ve built and the followers they have amassed. Ralph Lauren are an absolute powerhouse and something that proves that brand will always win, long term. I love the business model of LVMH and the direction in which they take their companies. Outside of my industry I respect a lot of people but my main motivation is actually myself. You can spend hours watching inspirational videos and following business people online who try to inspire others, but ultimately if you can’t inspire and motivate yourself, for yourself, I think you’ll struggle.

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Favourite

Your favourite

international city?

Manchester places?

I’ve got two that are equally as good for me. Tokyo and New York. I was lucky enough to visit Tokyo to meet some big retail buyers and distributors and I instantly fell in love with the place. The culture, the people and the food are incredible and it’s somewhere I want to try and visit often.

Such a tough one. There’s so many places I really like going to. 20 Stories, the bar that’s recently opened in Spinningfields is a new favourite of mine. Panoramic views of Manchester, good vibes and a fire pit… what’s not to love!? I like the Northern Quarter for exploring and wandering around. I’m big into music so Piccadilly Records is always time well spent followed by Ezra & Gil for some brunch. Alberts Schloss is always good when you need to let off bit of steam too!! Basically anywhere that has good food, good drinks and good vibes, count me in!!!

New York is equally as high on my list, the hustle and bustle of the city motivates me like crazy, the global commerce that takes place there and just the amount of good bars, restaurants and things to do makes me want to move there within the next hour.

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FASHION

What makes the perfect shirt?

There’s no doubt about it, every well dressed man owns an immaculate white shirt or two. They’re almost a ‘Gntlman’s Staple’.

What do you need it for? Where are you going to wear it? How do you want it to fit? Just some of the questions posed when making this shopping decision. Here’s our thoughts on what makes the most important elements that will help you chose the perfect white shirt.

It is however, a tough choice to decide which one to buy. There are so many brands, fabrics and styles to chose from and while others will settle for the average white shirt, we believe you need to pay attention and spend time on working out which one is best for you.

1

2

3

Fit

Fabric

Detail

Fit is always so, so, SO important & on a white shirt, you can't get away with not paying attention to this. Find the fit that suits you, and helps you feel comfortable whilst your looking sharp. Don’t be lazy with this, take the time to try a few and see how they feel, look and sit on your torso. There’s nothing better than a perfectly fitted, stylish white shirt, so this investment of time will undoubtedly pay off.

We’ve all seen them, the white shirts with the fabric density of toilet paper. You don’t want to be wearing a shirt that people can see through, especially when you’re hit with some rain, which happens quite a lot in Manchester. You need to pick your fabric for the occasion to which you’re planning on wearing said shirt. You can most commonly choose from Oxford Cottons, Cotton Poplin & Cotton blended with Elastane. We’re not fans of Polyester..

White shirts sell themselves, a good white shirt doesn’t need massive print or colour splashed across them, the detail within them is what counts. Keep things really low key while showing a stronger focus on the above points. Let the details be known to you, and be confident that these are the defining features between a bad shirt & a perfect white shirt.

We Are Gntlmen f www.wearegntlmen.com

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A white shirt needs to be super versatile too, you want to be able to wear it with jeans, chinos, shorts, the lot!


" Take a look at Victor

in our current collection, some say it is infact THE perfect shirt but we’ll let you decide for yourself...

"

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THEME

52 London Rd Alderley Edge SK9 7EF


diversity — open for business? “HOW DOES DIVERSITY AFFECT BUSINESS GROWTH?” WAS THE QUESTION OBI AND ENTERPRISE CITY UK POSED AT OLD GRANADA STUDIOS.

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he tech/digital sector was the focus of much of the session. Although people think of this sector as ultra-modern, forwardthinking, where opportunities are there for those with ideas regardless of background, that isn’t always the case. Tech is seen as overwhelmingly male — the whole Silicon Valley image is of young, educated white guys making it big.

As Naomi Timperley, director and co-founder of Tech North Advocates, put it, in 20 years’ time 90% of all jobs will have a digital element, and young girls just don’t think of tech as a career right now. The point was made that culturally, women don’t feel empowered enough to go for jobs — the quote being “there are guys who see an ad and think ‘I’ve got 25% of what they’re after, I can go for this’ whereas women feel they need 100% of the required skillset.

Former Dreamr CEO Mylo Kaye is a bit different from most company bosses. As he said: “I don’t move in typical CEO circles — I’m super-passionate about everyone having a voice, and I feel that the very language companies use when recruiting is an issue — you see ads looking for a ‘ninja developer’ or ‘rock star’ type, they’re very masculine words.”

Vimla Appadoo, service designer at the Department of Work & Pensions, added: “The DWP is particularly keen on the staff representing the community we serve and we’re doing that at most levels, but as you take a step up to management it’s less apparent — that’s why I moved on from working with start-ups, because I wanted to make a difference.”

OBI Diversity Event Video g

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EVENT THEME REPORT

If tech needs to increase diversity, might the pressure to do so come from investors? Timperley reckons that’s not realistically going to happen:

“Most investors don’t care that everything should be accessible to all — there is the ‘pale male and stale’ thing.”

Chair Kirsty Styles, talent and skills lead at Tech North, added: “Women can far exceed men on crowdfunding, this has been proven, but then they go to investors and it can be a different story.”

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There’s still much to do, clearly. And it could be there should be more emphasis on different roles. Kirsty Devlin, business development manager at Webantic, said: “I think there’s too much emphasis on female developers. But look at business development managers across Manchester, they tend to be guys. We need to mix that up. “Apprenticeships need to reflect a broader mix, and not just in numbers of females. Classism is a big thing — there are so many attributes that the down-toearth northern culture can offer. Not everyone has to come from a grammar school.”


Appadoo added: “Too often people focus on women, but there has to be an understanding of race, different disabilities, sexuality, mental health. There is a stigma about talking about issues such as race.” The question was raised: are degrees important? While some thought a degree requirement was becoming more prevalent, others less so — Styles pointing out that at least one of the Big Four accountancies have removed it as a requirement. Kaye said that as an employer “we don’t look at degrees at all — half our team don’t have them”.

So how might things improve? Devlin is a fan of degree apprenticeships: “it feels for the first time to me like working class people can get into such things, it’s a positive step”. The University Technical Centre at MediaCityUK is also a big plus, it was noted. Appadoo observed that Manchester now has more platforms where people can get their voices heard and start to build networks and influence. She said: “‘She Says Manchester’ is a platform for women to tell stories of workplace now 50% men and 50% women in attendance, we’ve now set up a mentoring programme with 80 people signed up to be mentors.

Is it still possible for “anyone” to start a business? Styles said: “There are a lot of people who don’t have that network of friends and family they can go to raise £200,000. The confidence to start up and grow, and the awareness of where you can go for support is key.” A final point was the international angle — as Styles noted, the tech scene in the North West has only 6% of people from an international background, a figure that in London comes in at 30%. Food for thought.

“There are now a few different platforms like this — it’s all about providing different ways of helping people navigate career paths.”

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BRANDING

nobody does it better MANCHESTER’S STATUS AS ONE OF THE UK'S COOLEST CITIES SEEMS UNQUESTIONED NOW — BUT IT WASN’T ALWAYS THE CASE. WE LOOK AT HOW DISGRUNTLED CREATIVES MADE A NOISE AND STARTED TO SHAPE THE CITY IN THE 1990s, SETTING THE WHEELS IN MOTION

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T

he phrase ‘This is Manchester… we do things differently here” has entered the cultural lexicon surrounding the city. Even though it’s highly debatable whether cultural maverick and inspirational figure Tony Wilson every actually used those words, their use in the ’24 Hour Party People’ film — a must-see, by the way — has made the phrase part of the Mancunian legend. Facts can be over-rated after all, and the spirit of those words holds true.

There’s a value placed on “cool” and Manchester holds an advantage over Birmingham and Leeds, its rivals as the key regional cities in terms of size. The city’s universities are continually the most applied-to in the country, while Manchester unfailingly scores highly in ‘most liveable city’ rankings as its global profile rises. Along with football, the city’s musical heritage is of course a huge contributor to the city’s cool factor — Factory Records and the Hacienda,

The Smiths, The Stone Roses and Anyway, Manchester was smartening many more. But none of these things up — but its marketing wasn’t. In the alone are enough — other cities have wake of the 1996 IRA bomb attack, had good bands, cool shops, venues the city and its advertising agency and clubs. But it’s Manchester that’s came up with a slogan: “Manchester seen as cool, and although people — we’re up and going”. Not great, is it? might think that’s always been the case, it hasn’t — so how does Man- Marketing slogans for cities can be chester win the perception battle? an area fraught with danger — too cheesy and you can look clueless, too A key moment came in the mid- cool and it’s not inclusive. This was at 1990s. The city’s leadership was the cheesier end of cheesy. But it was already changing, with the key this piece of marketing that triggered figures that would oversee its rise, a loosely connected group of people Sirs Howard Bernstein and Richard — club owners, bar and venue Leese, becoming entrenched at the operators, architects and developers Town Hall. The ambitious bid for the — to get together and form a coalition. 2000 Olympics, ultimately won by Inspired by the words “You Cannot Sydney, had attracted a few scoffing Be Serious!” associated with a certain comments, but showed the way to American tennis star, The McEnroe go — a direction that would lead to Group was born. it landing the 2002 Commonwealth Games. This event provided a new Who was involved? Tony Wilson stadium for Manchester City that of course, and various key people would prove crucial in securing from the Factory/Hacienda stable, Abu Dhabi’s investment in 2008, such as Jon Drape, who went on to incidentally. Vision. lead festivals group Ground Control. Carol Ainscow, the pioneering Gay

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BRANDING

“Manchester started to get it right”.

Village developer and bar owner. Nick Johnson of Atlas bar, who went on to Urban Splash and then Altrincham Market. Tom Bloxham and his Urban Splash friends. Architects like Ian Simpson. Colin Sinclair, then of the Boardwalk club, venue and rehearsal space, and later to become chief executive of Midas, the city’s inward investment agency. The group made its feelings, that marketing and branding had to be sharper and cooler, known to the city and succeeded in having the slogan booted into touch. But the point was that what the McEnroe Group offered was constructive, more than just griping — this was a group that wanted to be involved and to steer the city’s direction. Led by Andrew Stokes, now director of Visit England, from 2000, Marketing Manchester grew over the first decade of the 21st century to be a powerful body. Johnson became chairman of the organisation for a time, recounting

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that Wilson had sent him a message on hearing of the appointment: “The lunatics are taking over the asylum — and I love the lunatics”. With public and private working more effectively than is common elsewhere, Manchester started to get it right more often that not. The post-bomb years saw ambitious architecture commissioned, such as Urbis — now the National Football Museum, No. 1 Deansgate, the Beetham Tower, while the Bridgewater Hall, already in the works, came on stream. The city started bidding for events that moved it to the next level as a business and cultural centre. It was the first to lure the party political conferences away from the seaside towns that had long been their natural home. The Manchester International Festival, built on Peter Saville’s ‘Original, Modern’ tagline, was inaugurated in 2007.

Although people have moved on — and in some cases are sadly no longer with us — the results of the McEnroe Group’s efforts are still with us today. The civic marketing of rivals is still typically safe and steady, and Manchester remains ahead of the game. Nowhere is this more obvious than at international showcases such as MIPIM. The Manchester stand, which at times has involved design contributions from Hacienda designer Ben Kelly and has featured Johnson, Simpson and Saville among its speakers, invariably looks better, attracts more people and sells the city. As a city, it certainly does things differently in marketing terms.


lad vibes ONE OF THE COMPANIES THAT OBI HAS WORKED WITH AS IT GROWS IS ONLINE SMASH HIT THE LADBIBLE — HERE’S THE LOWDOWN ON WHAT’S HAPPENING

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he LADbible, founded in 2012, is one of the social media phenomena of our age. It claims to be “redefining entertainment and breaking news for a social generation” and has been described elsewhere as a “Millennial reworking of the lad mags that proliferated in the 1990s”. In summary, it’s all about content, and it belongs to the digital native generation. The general rule is that if things you see are funny, smart and distinctive they should be given a wider audience — if you’d share something with your mates, why wouldn’t everyone else want to see it?

They say that imitation is the greatest form of flattery, and LADbible has certainly spawned a whole host of content providers — some good, some less so. Never standing still, the business has also grown its activities into various offshoots, such as TheSportBible and Pretty 52, and the group now includes branded content agency Joyride and licensing arm CONTENTbible. We caught up with co-founder Arian Kalantari to see what’s happening. H

What it’s done is play a big part in how “old media” approaches social media, the stories it covers and how it covers them. The rules have changed.

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INTERVIEW

What’s the size of the business now and where do you see that going over the next couple of years?

What was it that made LADbible ‘click’ with so many people?

Over the last six years the business has grown from a two-person start-up to become one of the UK’s fastest growing tech companies with over 140 staff across two offices in Manchester and London. We will continue to expand with the ambition to become the biggest media companies in the world for young people.  

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LADbible is a social first publisher, that reaches 1 billion-plus people every month across our website and social media channels. We pride ourselves on being a trusted voice of our audience. The content we create is always positive, often fun and sometimes informative. Our audience find our content to be highly engaging and will share it widely with their friends and family.

How has the balance changed in the various channels you use to drive traffic to your content? We actually started as a Facebook page, even before we had our own website. Since then we have developed massively successful websites, and along with that we’ve grown and continue to grow communities across all the major social media platforms including Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat and YouTube. While Facebook remains the biggest driver of traffic, we are continually experimenting with new platforms. For example, we have recently had had massive successes with Instagram Stories.  


Can we expect to see any further offshoots along the lines of SPORTbible, or any ventures in different arenas, such as events? As a business, we never stand still. After expanding rapidly with channels like SPORTbible, Pretty52, ODDSbible, GAMINGbible, FOODbible etc, we realised it is important to be more focused and strengthening the quality of our core channels. At the same time we have future ambitions and have started to building out our original video content strategy and explore new technologies like VR and AR.   

Do you have any inspirations/ heroes in business or wider life? As a young entrepreneur, it’s vital to surround yourself expertise and never to be afraid to seek advice. At LADbible Group, we’ve been very fortunate to be mentored and advised by two of the very best in Mahmud Kamani and Hugh Chappell.

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PROPERTY PROFILE

express to return to days of glory SLEEK, BLACK, INSTANTLY RECOGNISABLE, THE EXPRESS BUILDING IS A MANCHESTER HIGHLIGHT. OBI PROPERTY IS PART OF THE TEAM THAT WILL PRESENT THE BUILDING, REIMAGINED FOR THE 21ST CENTURY, LATER IN 2018

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D

esigned by Sir Owen Williams, the futurist art decostyle Express Building is Grade Two-listed, with a sleek modern appearance that belies its 1939 construction.

That it should look so distinctive, so unusual for its age, is no accident — in the 1930s, Lord Beaverbrook, owner of the Daily Express, commissioned three buildings, in London, Manchester and Glasgow, decreeing that each should be of the highest architectural quality.

London’s completed in 1931 and Glasgow’s in 1937. Although engineered by Williams, both were designed by Ellis & Clark. In Manchester, Williams, a renowned engineer although not a chartered architect, had sole control. The Manchester building was and is generally held to be superior, with its curved corners, simple translucent and black contrasting curtain wall, cantilevered roof rails and three-storey turret lending an air of the streamline moderne rather than art deco. H

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PROPERTY PROFILE

The Express had been printed on site since 1927, meaning construction had to be phased so that the presses could keep rolling. Throughout the building’s life, there was a touch of theatre about the whole process, as it was possible for passersby on the street to view the huge printing press in the main hall. The 1990s update of the building saw the clear glass be replaced by reflective panels, protecting the interior from view. The building was listed in 1974, less than half a century after its opening, and the Express departed in the late 1980s as a cost-cutting national press abandoned the Great Ancoats Street and Withy Grove area, once

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the heart of the north’s contribution to mass media, one by one. What is the building’s contribution to Manchester? Architectural guru Sir Nikolaus Pevsner described it as “a most impressive sight from the street, particularly when lit up at night”. It was also singled out as a boyhood influence by Sir Norman Foster, the modern architectural giant, who grew up in the south of the city and told one interviewer he was “very taken” with the Express Building, adding “I knew it was there and I went looking for it — it wasn’t in a part of town you could just stumble across”. This is a major point — the Express isn’t in Manchester’s civic heart, but right out at what was

once the very boundary of Manchester city centre, marking the start of the road north to Oldham. As much as any 80,000 sq ftplus building could be described as a “hidden gem”, this is it. H


January 1936. Front elevation from Great Ancoats Street looking N.W.


January 1936. Great Ancoats Street entrance

January 1936. Section A of old building. Removing the machines.


February 1936. Starting of the new building in the section A.

February 1936. Removing figure from the old Building

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March 1936. Corner — George Leigh St.


January 1937. New Building staircase unpainted.

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June 1937.


June 1937.

June 1937. Starting of the new building in the section B.

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July 1939. Great Ancoats Street


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THEME

July 1939. New Building staircase.

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October 1948. New canopy at the front entrance.

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October 1954. Publishing room.


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October 1954.


September 1954. New process department.

September 1954. New process department.

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March 1962.


OBI Property is project managing a full-scale redevelopment, to provide 81,000 sq ft of workspace in this unique setting. Working with Ben Adams Architects, we’ll be introducing a new spiral staircase linking the ground and first floors, while a mezzanine will be added to the sixth floor. Planning permission was secured at the start of the year and the building will be re-presented to the market in autumn 2018. James Bostock of OBI’s building consultancy team said: “Express Building is a Manchester landmark. Our intention is to raise the bar in Manchester; combining efficient, super connected workspace,

with unrivalled occupier amenities in one of the most dynamic areas of the city centre.” Richard Lace of the transactions and asset management team, added: “When completed, Express Building will provide forward thinking, contemporary workspace that respects the character of this iconic property. “Extending to almost 80,000 sq ft, the building has the ability to accommodate a variety of size requirements and will be aimed at occupiers from a wide range of sectors, including those who are part of the thriving digital and tech scene.”

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PROPERTY THEME PROFILE

f Express Building CGI of approved refurbishment

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PROPERTY THEME PROFILE

c Express Building CGI visualisation of interior


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R EG I S T E R E D C H A R I T Y N O. 1134580

Support Something Worthwhile

The Factory Youth Zone is a charity run Youth Centre based in Harpurhey, Manchester. It provides activities and targeted programmes to young people aged 8-19 (25 with additional needs), giving them somewhere to go, something to do and someone to talk to.

Our aim is to create a generation with no limits, by raising young people’s aspirations and empowering them to reach their full potential.

931 Rochdale Rd, Manchester M9 8AE United Kingdom thefactoryyz.org 0161 203 5333 If you would like to get involved or support us contact: INFO@THEFACTORYYZ@ORG


Closing in on Clerkenwell — Manchester’s quest for design excellence Can Manchester realistically be described as an interior design hotspot? OBI’s Andrew Crompton examines how the city stacks up.

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DESIGN THEME

W

ith well over 60 commercial furniture and interior finishes showrooms and many other design-led retail businesses located in the Clerkenwell area of London, the Manchester design scene has a long way to go to emulate the sheer quantity and diversity Clerkenwell has to offer. But over the past three years there has been a substantial upturn in the drive for established furniture and furnishings manufacturers to set up a base in Manchester’s city centre. It wasn’t so long ago that if a design professional needed to show a client certain pieces of furniture for an office fit-out, they’d have to book a day or two to go down to Clerkenwell,

visit multiple showrooms and walk miles in a quest for the perfect task chair. No denying that it was always a pleasant and ultimately valuable trip but one or two days out of your client’s diary was always a luxury many could not afford. Fresh out of university in 2005, my experience of Manchester was that, like every other UK city, it was way behind London in so many aspects. Good commercial office design in the north was in its infancy — cost effective blue carpet was still the go-to staple for landlords and tenants alike, and from memory there was only one commercial furniture showroom in the city centre showcasing inspirational and aspirational products. H

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pg. 71/72

f Form. www.by-form.net


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DESIGN

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pg. 73/74

e Boss Design www.bossdesign.com

Boss UK sales director Andy Tatton tells us why he thinks there has been an increase in of show spaces outside of London: "Whilst London remains a significant hub of activity for the furniture industry, investment in infrastructure and education outside of London has seen manufacturers/suppliers opening show spaces to accommodate a demand that was previously London focused. The big change we have seen recently is a requirement for higher standards of interiors and spaces that would have previously been solely evident in London."

As Manchester has developed into the impressive city it is now, it seems that design manufacturers and suppliers have started to realise the huge potential of having a considered presence in the city — not just to support the inherent design community, but to showcase their products to a wider audience for the whole of the North, a part of the country starved of design sustenance for far too long.

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DESIGN

One of the most visible names to have an impact in Manchester is the Penketh Group. Penketh's were among the team that delivered a hugely transformational space at Neo for Bruntwood, creating a business environment that’s ideal for the next-generation tech firms that thrive on collaboration. Penketh's then took the whole of the eighth floor at Neo to use as its Manchester showroom, allowing it to showcase product and ideas for interiors with a 360-degree panoramic view of the city as a backdrop.

Other prominent names that have setup bases in the last year or so are Interface Carpets and Connection Furniture, IKON Furniture, and Form Show Studio in the Northern Quarter. All this helps to build the case that Manchester’s furniture scene is on the rise — businesses in the market now have options, and healthy competition can only drive standards up.

pg. 75/76

g Penketh www.penkethgroup.com

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SHARE YOUR STORY START A PODCAST.

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DESIGN

kings and queens MANCHESTER DIGITAL AGENCY E3CREATIVE HAD A PROBLEM WITH THEIR WORKSPACE —AND THAT’S WHERE OBI PROPERTY CAME IN. EIGHTEEN MONTHS ON, WE CAUGHT UP TO SEE WHAT A NEW BASE HAS DONE FOR THE BUSINESS

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ntil 2016, Manchester digital agency e3creative had been based at Boardwalk in Knott Mill but decided they needed something more: more for their people, more for their clients.

In moving to Queens House in summer 2016, they became the first business to take up space at the newly refurbished building off Lincoln Square. e3 took a ten-year lease with a break at five years, committing to 3,200 sq ft on the fourth floor of the 19,000 sq ft building. The move has been such a boon to the business it has since doubled in size, taking another floor.

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CEO Jake Welsh says: “We’ve grown as a business over seven years, and rather than building single products, we’ve focused on developing longer-term relationships — we’re not about quickfire work. We knew we had to step up in a different location, as well as a different service offering.” Welsh says it was about professionalising things, adding quality to support the team: “The thinking behind what we were looking for was three-fold — firstly culture. The previous office felt hot, it felt close, the culture suffered and then the product suffers. We needed something culturally right — breathing space, breakout areas.” H

e e3 Creative Queens House Queen St, Manchester, M2 5HT www.e3creative.co.uk

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DESIGN

“Secondly, being in the centre of Manchester was always key, and thirdly, the service offer, we needed to build in the structural walls the agency needed — from front of house to ‘war rooms’ to board rooms, creative rooms — because Queens House was such a blank canvas, it allowed us to do what we wanted with it.” In OBI, e3 found an advisor willing to listen and able to understand the needs of an independent operator. Welsh says: “When we started working with OBI, it wasn’t just about the lease arrangements, but about how to position ourselves as a business, we had support from the design team. “The OBI Difference to me is that you’re working with people, you’re not working with a corporate

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infrastructure. You’re dealing with people who are agile and answer concerns in a very human way — that made a massive difference for us because we’re the same.” He adds: “The move gave us confidence, and it gave our clients confidence too — when they walk in here and see what we’re prepared to invest in our space, it shows what we’re prepared to invest in them as well. Our space says everything about what we do. “The space has had a massive impact on the team, we’ve built in that aspect of work becoming a second home, there’s a lot of freedom — we’re trying to build a culture where it doesn’t feel like work. We want to create a space people can thrive in.”

e3 Creative Video g


Redefining Industry Iconic workspace inside the 1800s warehouse.

TheBondedWarehouse.com

Be part of a historic landmark. Iconic city centre workspace now available. OBI Property: 0161 237 1717 | 81 Allied London: 0161 834 8640


PROPERTY PROFILE

style in the city GARY NEVILLE AND RYAN GIGGS' ST. MICHAEL’S PARTNERSHIP ARE ON A MISSION IN MANCHESTER CITY CENTRE. HERE’S AN INSIGHT INTO WHAT’S BEING PLANNED.

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M

anchester has done a lot of growing up in the last 20 years, becoming a city more confident of itself on the world stage.

As the Spinningfields commercial district has blossomed on the western edge of the city centre, attention has turned to making the most of the assets that sit in the city core, that grid of streets that sit between Spinningfields and the Victorian era splendour of Manchester’s Civic Quarter. Those streets are now alive with ideas. St Michael’s is a major mixed-use project, 750.000 sq ft in total, which is set to raise the bar once again for the city. It includes a uniquely shaped lozenge-shaped tower of 34 storeys, set above a five-storey podium, with the tower to be clad in bronze anodized aluminium to give it a dynamic look.

The project will bring 147,690 sq ft of Grade A office space, an international 216 bed five-star hotel, 189 high end apartments which will be serviced directly by the hotel, conferencing, gym and spa facilities to Jackson’s Row. It will also bring a new synagogue, a range of high end restaurants and bars as well as new public spaces, one of which will be set on the 10th floor and be home to multiple contemporary street food stalls. It will host live music and cinematic events. The frontage of the historic Bootle Street police station is to remain and be converted into a five-star boutique hotel with a bar and restaurant overlooking Albert Square and the Town Hall. The existing Sir Ralph Abercromby pub is also to be retained as the developer looks to blend the best of old and new. H

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PROPERTY THEME PROFILE

Manchester City Council’s planning committee approved the scheme at the start of March 2018 and construction work on site is likely to start in 2019. On behalf of the St Michael’s Partnership Gary Neville said : “We were delighted that Manchester City Council has granted planning permission on St Michael’s and now hope to work towards delivering this prestigious mixed-use scheme of the highest quality — this is a strategic location that is in need of regeneration. “St Michael’s will set new standards in design and quality of accommodation which will reinforce the city’s position both nationally and internationally.” Neville’s point on regeneration rings true. Even cities full of life have their quiet corners, and Manchester is no different. Certain squares and intersections are hives of activity,

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and while some of the linking streets and boulevards are bustling and vibrant, others are not. In Manchester, Jackson’s Row is one of the under-used parts of that city centre mix. Sitting between Deansgate to the west and where Southmill Street leads into Albert Square at the higher eastern end, Jackson’s Row and Bootle Street are both relatively quiet compared to the bustle of Quay Street to the south and, a few streets north, John Dalton Street. Active uses that animate the area, which is at the very heart of the city, are lacking. Developing such a landmark scheme is always a sensitive issue, and being close to architectural gems such as Manchester Town Hall, doubly so. That’s why the project has been approached with utmost care and due deference to the required levels of design quality. The Partnership has worked for several years to get

the scheme right, taking on board consultation and comments from Mancunians, heritage bodies and interest groups alike. Neville said: “We took on board a lot of criticisms and concerns from when the scheme was first proposed and we have worked very hard over the past year with Stephen Hodder to deliver a scheme that will set new standards in design and quality of accommodation” “This is a hugely exciting project for Manchester, which ultimately we’re undertaking because we want to improve the city and help take it to the next level.”


Ryan Giggs

Ryan Giggs, the Manchester United legend who is also part of the St Michael’s Partnership, said: “I genuinely believe that St Michael’s is a truly brilliant scheme that will vastly improve the most central part of Manchester — a city that I love. It’s now about the hard work starting so St Michael’s can be enjoyed by people who both live in and visit our wonderful city.”

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PROPERTY THEME PROFILE

— EDUCATION EVOLVED St Michael’s is not the only project that Neville and co are busy with. Working with academic pioneers Lancaster University, industry leaders Microsoft and locally, Trafford Council, the Class of 92 cohort of ex-Manchester United players have recently announced their plans for UA92, a game-changing higher education initiative at the heart of Old Trafford. Courses will be offered in the areas of business, sport, media and psychology with the first cohort of students starting in September 2019. UA92 will deliver a unique curriculum with employability and character development at its core, intrinsically linked with academic development.

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The main site is at the former Kellogg’s HQ on Talbot Road, next to Emirates Old Trafford cricket ground – the building is circa 110,000 sq ft with UA92 taking the lowest two floors from September 2019 and the next two floor by floor over the following two academic years. Trafford and its partner Bruntwood are also developing the site around the cricket club with facilities including a new leisure centre and just under 160,000 sq ft of office and academic space.

Gary Neville, UA92 Founder, said: “I have always believed that success is down to more than just luck and talent. There should be no limits to what you can achieve with the right preparation. “Much more than a degree, UA92 will offer a personal development journey that will support our students in developing the character, expertise, resilience, drive and tenacity to shine in their chosen career.” Zerum is acting as project manager and M&E engineer for UA92, with Hawkins Brown engaged as architect.


@JUNKYARDGOLFCLUB BOOK ONLINE: JUNKYARDGOLFCLUB.CO.UK 87


MIPIM

yes we cannes MANCHESTER WAS AGAIN TO THE FORE AT MIPIM, THE WORLD’S LARGEST PROPERTY AND INVESTMENT CONFERENCE

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he 29th edition of MIPIM — Marche International des Professionnels d’Immobilier to give it the full name — once again saw more than 25,000 registered delegates head for Cannes from around the globe.

MIPIM is like no other event in the property calendar, and it’s an event that is widely misunderstood and misreported by the mass media. Often billed as a show of excess, at its heart it is a global investment showcase, attracting civic leaders, key investment decision-makers and the creative minds who shape the physical and economic development of our cities and towns.

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There is so much going on it seems strange to pack it all into four days, and really, at modern MIPIM it’s impossible to attend everything that appeals. Thought-leadership conference sessions, new proptech showcase events, turns from star speakers, and of course plenty of enthusiastic networking were crammed in this year, with the main business being done at the Palais des Festivals and the surrounding harbourside yachts, hotels and restaurants.

Once again, Manchester was in aparkling form. Having to adapt to some freak weather conditions that meant the beachside pavilion was rendered unusable, the Manchester Pavilion instead relocated to Level 3 of the Palais des Festivals, a spot that provided ample room for some key sessions, catch-ups and meeting new contacts. Here’s some of the highlights:


THE THEMES

TECH AND SCIENCE

OBI’s Will Lewis was part of a panel also featuring Manchester Science Partnerships’ Tom Renn and AO.com’s Adam Warne. Titled Northern Tech Powerhouse (QR CODE BELOW): what makes Manchester a driving force? the session zeroed in on how Manchester’s business community can appeal to tech entrepreneurs — the point was made that those who function as “operators” rather than inflexible “landlords” are on top of the game?

HOLISTIC AND HEALTHY

Several sessions looked at health, and how better thinking can make Manchester a healthier city, not only reducing pressure on health services and improving access to jobs, but in simply making the city a better place to be. Chris Boardman, the Olympic gold medallist who serves as Greater Manchester’s walking and cycling commissioner, updated attendees on live programmes and the masses more still to be done, while speakers from Helsinki and Delft offered insights from those cities.

THE SCHEMES

INTERNATIONAL LINKS

Manchester’s development over recent years of key partnerships is bearing fruit in the long term as evidenced by projects such as the Northern Gateway, which will improve and build upon a large swathe of the city’s northern fringes, Airport City and East Manchester — the first two being largely Chinesebacked and the latter Abu Dhabi. All were prominent here.

There’s a lot to get through at MIPIM, but the spotlight was shone on several top Manchester projects over the course of the week. Citylabs 2.0, the second part of the Manchester Science Partnerships scheme at the heart of the Manchester Corridor, is to go ahead after receiving an £18.5m Evergreen loan. MAG Developments chief executive Lynda Shillaw updated delegates on Airport City, the £1bn project that will see Manchester Airport firmly established as an international business location of choice. And to close the week, Allied London CEO Mike Ingall and Manchester International Festival director John McGrath inspired crowds with insight into progress at St John’s and the Factory.

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ART

where the walls talk A PARISIAN STREET ARTIST, THE MAN BEHIND SOME ONE OF MANCHESTER’S MOST RECOGNISABLE PIECES OF ART IN RECENT YEARS — WHAT’S THE STORY BEHIND AKSE?

If you spend time around Manchester, in particular the Northern Quarter, the chances are that sooner or later you’ll stumble across a piece of work by Akse. Using a distinctive photo-realistic style, he’s been responsible for some of the most remarked upon and photographed shots around the city, adding yet another angle to the everchanging streetscape of the city. Whether it’s his David Bowie mural in Stevenson Square, or the Psychopaths collection including Walter White’s alter ego Heisenberg and American Psycho’s Patrick Bateman, or a Wayne Rooney portrait commissioned by the FA, his work has established a firm following. This is his story. H

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I was born in Paris’ suburb in the mid 70’s. I’ve been drawing since I’m a child and was told I was talented at the early age; this is probably what motivated me not to give up. During my teenage years I was drawing comics for fun and in the early 90’s I got into the hip-hop culture, that’s when I started Graffiti. Even though I began writing letters, I quickly specialised in painting characters. But I was doing alright at school so my parents guided me to follow the science route rather than an artistic career. At the age of 13-14 it’s hard to know what is best for you so you just follow your parents advice.

CAN YOU TELL US A BIT ABOUT YOUR BACKGROUND AND HOW YOU BECAME AN ARTIST?

I moved to Manchester in 1997. I came as part of the ERASMUS exchange program to study at MMU for an MSc in Chemistry. I then stayed to complete a PhD and found a science related job in Manchester. Painting is only a hobby but my passion for it has kept me going until this day. Over the last few years I gained more popularity and this brought some amazing opportunities: from travelling to paint abroad (USA, Czech Republic, Tunisia, Italy, Dubai…) to high-profile commissioned works (Wayne Rooney for the FA to commemorate his goal scoring record for England — the canvas is on permanent display at Wembley stadium, John Boyega for the Old Vic theatre, Zayn Malik for one of his music video shot in Miles Platting, Vin Diesel and The Rock for the release of Fast & Furious 8 movie).

WHEN DID YOU MOVE TO MANCHESTER AND WHAT BROUGHT YOU TO THE CITY?

Photorealism is not what attracted me in the first place when I started Graffiti, but with time this is the style I decided to develop, it was a natural evolution. My first photorealistic portrait was done in 1993, but it’s in 1998 that I realise that I was good at it when a friend asked me to paint a portrait of his 2-year-old son.

HAS IT ALWAYS BEEN PHOTOREALISTIC GRAFFITI THAT INTERESTED YOU?

Mode2 is probably the graffiti artist who made me want to focus on painting characters; I was captured by the flow and energy of his B-boys and B-girls, and also fascinated by the lighting he used in his artwork. I then became captivated by the work of French graffiti artists Decay and No.6 (PCP crew) in the mid-90’s especially with the amazing texture rendering in their work. In terms of realistic graffiti portraiture, Alex (MAC crew) from France is probably my biggest influence since the early 90’s. Finally, the portraits of Derren Brown and Sebastian Kruger have definitely motivated me to raise my game.

WHO AND WHAT ARE YOUR BIGGEST INFLUENCES?

Locations are difficult to get so I don’t really choose them, but I always try to adapt my subjects or composition to the location/environment. The subjects I choose are generally people for whom I have some kind of admiration, whether it is for their craft (acting, music, sport), wisdom or for what they have achieved in their lifetime. Therefore, the selection process is very personal.

HOW DO YOU PICK YOUR LOCATIONS AND SUBJECTS?

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MODERN MANCHESTER

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ART

Martial Arts is something that fascinated me since the young age. I grew up with Bruce Lee and Jackie Chan movies so I practiced Judo when I was a kid, then a bit of Karate, and started Muay Thai when I arrived in Manchester 20 years ago. I trained on Portland street with Master Ronnie Green/Master Woody/Master Krin until 2005, and then moved to Kru Tony Moore’s gym in Ashton-under-Lyne. I had to stop training when my first son was born 5 years ago. I really miss it, but I’ll have to wait untill my second son gets older before I can go back.

WHAT OTHER INTERESTS DO YOU HAVE OTHER THAN ART?

Cinema is obviously another interest of mine. I used to watch a lot of movies in the 90’s, this is probably why I paint a lot of actors and started this personal project “Psychopaths Project” back in 2011. Although it started as generic portraits of actors, I gradually focused on iconic TV series/Movie characters.

There are 2 portraits that had the biggest response to date. The first one is the Heisenberg portrait I painted on Tib Street in the Northern Quarter back in 2013; by coincidence it timed with the release of season 5 which is probably what made it so popular. The other portrait that had a huge response was my Tribute to David Bowie based on original photograph by Gavin Evans; his wife Iman actually retweeted the picture of the mural and his son Duncan Jones acknowledged it as well on Twitter so I couldn’t get any better approval, it’s just priceless.

WHICH PORTRAIT HAS HAD THE BIGGEST RESPONSE TO DATE?

It was great to have Case (Maclaim) and the duo Pichiavo to decorate our city since I’m a big fan of their work.

OVER THE YEARS THERE HAS BEEN AN INFLUX IN STREET ART IN MANCHESTER, FROM BOTH LOCAL AND INTERNATIONAL ARTISTS, IS THERE ANY WHICH HAVE STOOD OUT TO YOU?

I’ve just completed the mural of Uma Thurman as Beatrix Kiddo of Kill Bill in Burnage, which replaces the Kevin Spacey piece. I’m painting at CONTRAST street art festival in Liverpool at the end of the month and will paint the substation on Tib Street in the Northern Quarter in May. I will also paint at UPFEST, Europe’s largest street art/graffiti festival, in Bristol at the end of July.

WHAT’S NEXT, IS THERE ANYTHING YOU ARE WORKING ON AT THE MOMENT IN THE CITY THAT WE CAN KEEP AN EYE OUT FOR?

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MUSIC

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going live MUCH OF MANCHESTER’S SOUL CAN BE FOUND IN ITS LIVE MUSIC VENUES, INSTITUTIONS TO BE CHERISHED AND ENJOYED TO THE FULL

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long with football, music is probably what modern Manchester is most famous for. But as well known as the touchstones of Manchester music culture, such as the Hacienda, Factor Records, The Smiths, the Stone Roses and Oasis, the city can’t stand still.

Big nights with the stars of the 1980s and 1990s will always do well, but the thing that makes live music in Manchester so compelling in the 21st century is a new wave of live venues, places that have gained a following among music lovers as being great spaces to watch performers on their way up. Some are old, some new, some reinvented or enjoying a new lease of life. All are contributing to a live music

scene that helps maintain Manchester’s reputation as a great place for special experiences. In purely economic terms, the influx of weekend visitors is of huge value to Manchester, as is the arrival each autumn of a new batch of students, attracted to the city by its musical story. So where is all this happening? Probably the best known of the newbies is Albert Hall. Operated by Mission Mars, which is also behind several other venues, the space was built as a Methodist hall in 1908 and is designated by English Heritage as a Grade II-listed building and was used as a nightclub between 1999 and 2011, a use that really didn’t exploit its potential to the full.

known as one of the UK’s top gig venues. It’s a special looking place, with huge windows, elaborate plasterwork and ornate tiling, for those with time to look around, but it’s the sound and atmosphere that make it so memorable. No one is far from the stage, with balconies adding to the intimacy, and the well-stocked bar keeps the drinks coming. Although not large enough to accommodate the very biggest of acts, it holds around 2,000 — big enough to be loud and memorable, small enough to make everyone feel part of it — and has played host to some incredible nights, not least the People’s Concert of November 2017, headlined by British Sea Power, 100 years on from a concert of the same name was held there.

Put simply, since its reopening in early 2014, Albert Hall has become

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Operator Mission Mars know what they’re doing. Not only do they run the acclaimed Albert’s Schloss underneath the hall — a crazy mash-up of beerhall, restaurant and cabaret bar that somehow just works perfectly — they operate Trof bar and two other gig venues in the Deaf Institute and Gorilla. Deaf Institute has been a firm favourite for a decade or so now, but the arrival of Gorilla has made a more recent impact on Whitworth Street. Offering a nice counter-balance to the Ritz across the road (which is still going strong, sprung dancefloor and all) Gorilla is a cool bar and restaurant in its own right, but also a great venue for up and coming or more niche acts — if they’re a BBC 6Music favourite, they’ll be playing here.

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That’s if those acts aren’t on the other side of town at the Northern Quarrter’s Band on the Wall. The Swan Street venue has long been a Manc favourite. The building itself dates back to 1862, being a flagship pub frequented by Smithfield Market workers for decades. It became a music venue in the mid-1970s, originally hosting jazz nights but quickly becoming a favourite for the emerging punk acts of the city, spearheaded by Buzzcocks. After closing for a period in which it underwent a £4m refurbishment, the Band on the Wall reopened in 2009. But the story doesn’t end there — in October 2017, Manchester City Council approved plans by Inner City Music, the charity that owns and operates the venue, for a scheme that


brings the derelict Cocozza building at its rear back to useful life as part of an extended venue.

house Bar will be remodelled with the external terrace space increased and a new commercial kitchen installed.

Gavin Sharp, chief executive of Inner City Music, said: “There has been a music venue operating at Band on the Wall for over a century, and we want to make sure it will be here for at least another 100 years.”

The planned learning complex will include a rooftop AV suite, allowing young people and other groups to create new digital work and engage with international touring artists. Inclusivity is the name of the game.

“Bringing the Cocozza building into our footprint means we can significantly increase the main venue capacity, expand and upgrade our learning facilities and create a second smaller, intimate venue on-site.”

The learning spaces will be home to Band on the Wall’s improved archive facilities, enabling the organisation to better catalogue its library. The Picturehouse Bar will continue to showcase selected archive materials.

Designed by Manchester-based OMI Architects, the plans see the main venue capacity increase from 350 to 500 for headline artists. The Picture-

With these venues, and atmospheric spaces such as Old Granada Studios, which played host to spellbinding performances by New Order as part

of Manchester International Festival 2017, live music is in the best of health in the city.

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EVENTS

doing it differently OBI PROPERTY IS A KEEN SUPPORTER OF MANCHESTER’S FACTORY YOUTH ZONE, AS DEMONSTRATED WITH TWO VERY DIFFERENT FUNDRAISING EVENTS

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here’s more than one way to raise a smile, and there’s more than one way to raise money for a great cause. OBI has been supporting the Factory Youth Zone for several years now, and in recent months we’ve managed, alongside some great local businesses, to bring out the best in Manchester with two very different, but both equally rewarding, events.

Firstly, the second instalment of Reds vs Blues — the derby with a difference. This saw players from the corporate community pay a fee for the honour of donning the colours of Manchester United and Manchester City to do battle on the pitch at the J Davidson Stadium, Altrincham.

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With a professional referee in Alan Wiley and star managers — Dennis Tueart for the Blues and Phil Neville (replacing brother Gary, following a heavy defeat in the first match) for the Reds, the match was keenly fought, with United running out 4-3 winners.

— Fast forward a couple of months, and International Women’s Day 2018 saw guests from across the Manchester business community gather at Menagerie for the inaugural OBI Property and Factory Youth Zone Champagne Lunch.

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“We’ve loved putting on the football match, but we thought it was time to do something a bit different as well. It was a great day and we hope to do it again in the future.”

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EVENTS

Guests were treated to a glass of Champagne on arrival, a twocourse meal, live entertainment and a fashion show by Nadine Merabi. An astonishing ÂŁ17,000 was raised on the day. OBI supports the Factory Youth Zone because it does amazing things. It provides activities and opportunities for kids in one of the most underprivileged areas of the whole of the UK, in inner city Manchester. Were it not for the work of the Factory Youth Zone, the tireless effort of its volunteers and supporters, a lot of kids would have no opportunity to try different sports, to explore how talented they might be in art, cookery and any of a number of other areas. Our communities are so much better for this kind of thing. OBI would like to thank:

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“It was brilliant to host these events, and we owe a few thanks, to Moneyplus, Lorraine Worsley-Carter MBE Relentless Group Oliver James Associates Landmark Investments Cowgill Holloway Muse Developments Champion Menagerie Ashurst Communications Nadine Merabi 90 Degrees Interface Clear Marketing Lowry Hotel Penketh Group 20 Stories Florence Verity

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Q&A

meet the team

Joe Averill NICKNAMES?

JO-BI, JAVERS WHAT DO YOU DO AT OBI?

Advise a number of Manchester’s fastest growing businesses on their end to end real estate strategy. WHEN DID YOU JOIN?

August 2016 WHAT DID YOU DO BEFORE?

Client Engagement specialist @ fast growth tech business AppLearn responsible for winning new business THE TECHNOLOGY MEDIA TELECOMS (TMT) SECTOR WAS THE MOST ACTIVE SECTOR FOR TAKE UP IN MANCHESTER CITY CENTRE IN 2017 — HOW IS THEIR DEMAND FOR SPACE SHAPING THE REAL ESTATE INDUSTRY?

There has been a significant transition in the past decade of the perception of workspace from a business cost to a business asset. Tech businesses are investing heavily in their workspace as they look to provide inspiring environments, improve digital connectivity and most importantly attract the best talent in a highly competitive industry. Landlords are significantly improving their level of services and level of amenity as they look to attract fast growth tech businesses. They are no longer looking to provide just 4 walls and a meeting room, they are actively looking to partner businesses within the tech sector to provide them with the infrastructure they require to grow.

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WHAT IS THE MOST IMPORTANT ADVICE YOU WOULD GIVE TO ANY BUSINESS LOOKING TO RELOCATE?

FAVOURITE PLACE TO DRINK, AND FAVOURITE PLACE TO EAT IN MANCHESTER?

Make sure you have an in depth understanding of Manchester’s real estate market to ensure you get true value from your workspace. The level of service being provided by Landlords in recent years has improved drastically. It’s important that these businesses get value for money but also have transparency to the forward thinking developers in the city who are providing; greater amenity, improved connectivity, more flexibility and actively looking to partner these occupiers to nurture their growth.

I would go with Piccolino’s as it dangerously convenient to the OBI office and always has a great atmosphere with friendly staff. To eat, I would have to choose Tattu as it is in a great location with a great interior design.

WHAT HAS BEEN YOUR BIGGEST ACHIEVEMENT WHILST WORKING AT OBI?

Winning property professional of the year at MYTAs.

WHAT IS THE MOST EMBARRASSING THING YOU HAVE EVER DONE? (RUMOUR HAS IT YOU WALKED AROUND PALMA ACTING LIKE A DOG).

Yes true, good inside knowledge — not sure how you found out about that — Will Lewis perhaps? I lost a game of cards and the forfeit was to crawl around the pool barking like a dog. The Germans by the pool side were not impressed in the slightest “You English are crazy”. TELL US YOUR CLAIM TO FAME?

WHAT’S THE ONE SINGLE THING YOU’D DO THAT WOULD IMPROVE MANCHESTER?

At 27 years of age living in the city centre, it would be great to see more improvements on quality open space for social and leisure. ANY SPORTING HEROICS WE SHOULD HEAR ABOUT?

I used to play for Bournemouth FC when I was 16 years of age and more recently I was involved in a white collar boxing match to raise money for charity, which fortunately ended in a second round win for myself – or else I would never have heard the end of it in the office!

Charity boxing forever Manchester event, helping to raise over £12,000 with a number of other professionals in the city — 2nd round stoppage ;) IF YOU COULD HAVE ONE SUPER POWER WHAT WOULD IT BE AND WHY?

Teleportation. To save my shoes due to the amount of walking I do across Manchester and take the hassle out of airports!


THEME

The Spirit of an Era Channelling 1960s design to transform the workplace.

ABCbuildings.co.uk

Be part of something extraordinary. Unique city centre workspace now available. 106

OBI Property: 0161 237 1717 | Allied London: 0161 827 1727


the news OBI SIGNS AS PLACETECH PARTNER OBI Property has agreed a deal to be one of the founding partners supporting PlaceTech, a new service that aims to educate, inform and champion the products, services and pioneers bringing technology into the UK property sector. Set up this year by the highly regarded Place North West, which last year celebrated ten years of bringing vital news and analysis to the property industry, PlaceTech is dedicated to the technological innovation and digital transformation occurring in the wider real estate sector.

“We believe property and technology are two communities that haven’t conversed enough, in Manchester or anywhere, and there needs to a platform to connect businesses across these two sectors. By bridging the gap we believe it will allow for more innovation within the property sector, encourage growth and enhance assets across the city.”

CORE UP AND RUNNING WITH WORK. LIFE DEAL Boultbee Brooks Real Estates’ Core, a redevelopment of 30 Brown Street Manchester, has secured a key tenant in the form of London-based co-working start-up Work.Life, which has signed for 12,540 sq ft on the ground and first floors on a 10year lease. This will be the second time Work. Life has collaborated with BBRE, already being operational at the White Building in Reading. The Manchester site will be Work.Life’s first in the North West.

As OBI’s Joe Averill explains: “OBI Property are the real estate firm with a digital difference – we are always looking to innovate to make sure we are ahead of the curve. “This partnership aligns with our brand, with our values and with our direction as a business. This is highlighted by our recent partnership with Revere 3d, taking us in to the realm of virtual/augmented reality. OBI’s commitment to digital includes our having an in-house green screen video studio and our latest app Calico.

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NEWS

MOSLEY STREET GEM MOVES FORWARD Businesses that have been attracted to Work.Life’s existing facilities elsewhere include fashion brand Dr. Martens, dating app Grindr, television channel MTV and global accountancy EY. Core is set to open in August 2018 following completion of a redevelopment being project managed by OBI Property. David Kosky, co-founder of Work. Life, said: “We are delighted to have found a partner in BBRE that understands the value that our ground floor strategy can bring to their new developments. “We feel expanding into the flourishing regional cities was the logical next step for us as they are exciting markets that continue to grow economically and culturally year on year.” James Whitcher, asset management director at Boultbee Brooks, said: “As a company, Work.Life understand the value creation from having an existing, active community within a building that can drive value and lettings.”

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Plans have been submitted with Manchester City Council for 79 Mosley Street, at the heart of Manchester’s civic quarter, between Manchester Art Gallery and 2 St Peter’s Square Boultbee Brooks intends to add a mansard single-storey extension to the Grade 2-listed building, which would give it four full floors of office accommodation totalling 19,021 sq ft, along with 5,049 sq ft of retail and leisure space at ground floor and basement level and flexible office-leisure space at ground floor of 2,820 sq ft. The building could provide office space for 220 people and up to 80 jobs in retail and leisure. Like many of its neighbours in the Princess Street direction, the building was constructed as a warehouse in the 1870s. BBRE acquired the building in 2015.

OBI is project managing the redevelopment, which will see all internal structures and floors replaced, and the three external facades maintained and refurbished. The reconfigured building will offer clear floorplates and a new lobby space, while original features will be brought back to prominence. Roger James, development director at BBRE said: “Our proposals will provide flexible floor space required for modern occupiers while retaining the external aesthetics of the original building. We aim to bring this significant building back to life and to complete the jigsaw of the transformation of St Peter’s Square.”


LAST WORKSPACE UP FOR GRABS AT NO.1 Martin Gizzie of OBI’s building consultancy team, said: “We have been working with BBRE and the team for over two years. The proposals submitted provide an exciting solution which will see the building facades preserved for the long-term while new, flexible space will attract occupiers looking to take advantage of this prestigious and busy location.” The architect for the scheme is PRP.

With the rest of the building virtually full ad sold to investor Schroders, space on the 15th and 16th floors at No.1 Spinningfields has been released, with premiums expected for what’s commonly regarded as the best new space in Manchester. The two floors each total 11,300 sq ft, including a business lounge on the 17th floor, and apart from a suite of 6,600 sq ft of the third floor being retained for the SME market, are the last spaces to be released at No.1.

The building was 92% let on its completion in autumn 2017, with OBI acting as leasing adviser. The spaces were launched in a full-day event at the end of February. ALL Plus has been retained to manage the 19-storey building, where tenants including PwC, Squire Patton Boggs and Browne Jacobson were secured by Allied and its leasing advisor OBI Property. The 20 Stories restaurant operated by D&D London has opened to widespread acclaim.

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EVENTS

U+I: BUILDING A 2030 CITY 8:00am — 12:00pm £60.00 ORGANISER: Place North West & U+I

FAIRFIELD SOCIAL CLUB, ARCHWAY 6, TEMPERANCE STREET 5 JUN 2018

PLACE PARTY 2018 6:00pm — 3:00am £99.00 + VAT

ANNUAL DINNER 2018

ORGANISER:

6:45pm — 11:45pm

THE PRINCIPAL HOTEL,

£125 ORGANISER:

Place North West

MANCHESTER

Pro-Manchester

11 OCT 2018

THE MIDLAND HOTEL 21 JUN 2018

MANCHESTER OFFICES + WORKSPACE 2018 8:00am — 11:00pm £50.00 + VAT ORGANISER:

Place North West

MUSEUM OF SCIENCE & INDUSTRY, MANCHESTER 4 OCT 2018

WHY NOW IS THE TIME TO INVEST IN MANCHESTER

REVO CONFERENCE & EXHIBITION MANCHESTER 2018

7:00pm

9:00am — 5:00pm

TBC ORGANISER:

£395 Place North West

ORGANISER:

Revo

THE HAND & FLOWER, 1 HAMMERSMITH RD,

MANCHESTER CENTRAL

HAMMERSMITH, LONDON W14 8XJ

19 — 20 SEP 2018

17 OCT 2018

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INSIDER MADE IN THE UK AWARDS

INSIDER NORTH WEST 42 UNDER 42 DINNER 2018

7:00pm — 10:30pm

6:30pm — 10:30pm

£125 + VAT ORGANISER:

Insider

TITANIC HOTEL

ORGANISER:

Insider

THE LOWRY HOTEL 8 MAY 2018

20 JUN 2018

BUSINESS WOMEN'S NETWORK LUNCH 12:00pm — 2:30pm £50.00 + VAT ORGANISER:

Greater Manchester Chamber of Commerce

THE ALBERT SQUARE CHOP HOUSE, THE MEMORIAL HALL, ALBERT SQUARE, MANCHESTER 21 JUN 2018

MANCHESTER FURNITURE SHOW ORGANISER:

Clarion Event Group

MANCHESTER CENTRAL 15 - 17 JUL 2018

PLACE BARBEQUE 2018 12:00pm - 5:00pm £35.00 + VAT ORGANISER:

Fazenda, Spinningfields, Manchester

3 AUG 2018

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