Sunday 15 September 2019

Google increases its Dublin footprint yet again

The Chase building in Sandyford, owned by Kennedy Wilson
The Chase building in Sandyford, owned by Kennedy Wilson

Ronald Quinlan Commercial Property Editor

Google is to increase its already-substantial presence in Dublin even further after reaching an agreement to lease new offices in Sandyford in South County Dublin.

Google's move into the Chase building, which is owned by US real estate investment firm Kennedy Wilson, represents its second foray within six months into the Sandyford Business District (SBD).

Last August, the company reached agreement with Irish Life to lease four floors at the nearby Blackthorn Building.

The US web giant's agreement with Kennedy Wilson brings several months of talks between the parties to a successful conclusion, and will see it occupy the remaining 52,900 sq ft of vacant space at The Chase building.

While Kennedy Wilson did not identify Google in its announcement of the deal yesterday, Mary Ricks, president and CEO of Kennedy Wilson Europe, welcomed the agreement, saying: "We continue to be attracted to the fundamentals of the Dublin office market, where we are seeing strong levels of occupational demand."

Kennedy Wilson's 15-strong Dublin office portfolio is 98pc occupied.

Most notably, it includes the Capital Dock mixed-use campus development in the city's fast-growing south docklands.

The entire office element of the scheme has already been snapped up following the sale last year of 200 Capital Dock to US investment bank JP Morgan and the lease-up of 100 and 300 Capital Dock to Indeed.

Since Google acquired its EMEA headquarter offices on Barrow Street and the nearby Montevetro Building in 2011, it has tended towards concentrating its search for additional office space within that immediate area, earning it the moniker of 'Googletown'.

Only last week, the company formally opened its latest offices in the Dublin docklands area, inviting Taoiseach Leo Varadkar to cut the ribbon on the newly-contructed Velasco Building on Grand Canal Street.

The 51,000 sq ft property is within walking distance of Google's Barrow Street headquarters.

It is almost directly opposite the Treasury Building, the purchase of which the company is currently negotiating.

Google's bid to acquire the €170m Boland's Quay development is also understood be at an advanced stage.

Outside of its presence within Dublin's central business district and the Sandyford Business District, the US web giant entered into a 10-year lease on Block L at Freeman House in East Point Business Park in 2013.

All told, Google currently employs over 7,000 in the capital. (Additional reporting Bloomberg)

Irish Independent

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