Monday 23 September 2019

BNY Mellon seeks new London HQ as Brexit approaches

BNY Mellon may be drawn to a new location in London’s Docklands
BNY Mellon may be drawn to a new location in London’s Docklands

Jack Sidders

Bank of New York Mellon Corporation plans to start looking for a new London headquarters for its 5,000-strong workforce in the British capital, according to people with knowledge of the plan.

The US bank has tasked broker CBRE Group Inc with scouting options for a move in about five years' time, with new developments in the City of London and Canary Wharf districts among the potential sites, the sources said, asking not to be identified because the matter is private.

BNY Mellon aims to lease about 300,000 square feet (27,870 square metres) of office space, the people said. A spokeswoman for the bank declined to comment.

BNY Mellon is an exception among the global lenders saying they plan to move hundreds of jobs from London to the rest of Europe as a result of Brexit.

It sees fewer than 20 additional markets-related posts being needed in offices on the Continent, the firm's chairman for Europe, the Middle East and Africa, Michael Cole-Fontayn, said last May.

It already has a fully-licensed bank in Brussels from which it can sell most of its services.

The bank occupies two offices in London: the Mellon Financial Centre on Queen Victoria Street in the City of London and a smaller space in the One Canada Square tower in Canary Wharf.

There are about six years left on the lease of its main office and BNY Mellon could still agree to an extension with landlord Blackstone Group LP instead of moving, the people with knowledge of its plans said.

The search may prove a boost for Canary Wharf Group Plc, which owns most of the buildings in the district in London's Docklands.

The area has a long track record of luring US lenders away from the City, though it lost out on securing Deutsche Bank AG's new headquarters earlier this year.


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