In the largest office lease recorded in Pune to date in 2020, Simpliwork Offices, the Bengaluru-headquartered coworking space operator, has signed a long-term lease for 230,945 sq. ft. Grade A office space at Sky One Corporate Park in Pune. The deal was facilitated by the real estate consultancy firm, JLL.
The lease is a nine-year contract with a five-year lock-in. Sanjay Bajaj, JLL’s managing director for Pune, said India’s rental market has indeed shifted as a result of the global pandemic.
“Rents are marginally lower than pre-COVID-19 levels but this is considering that vacancy levels in Pune are perhaps the lowest in the country on account of low supply,” he said.
Simpliwork Offices provide customized, fully furnished and managed offices for medium and large enterprises, currently managing over 2.4 million sq. ft. of offices in leading Indian markets such as Bengaluru, Hyderabad, and Gurgaon, and now Pune. At the end of 2019, for example, Simpliwork signed a deal with Google for a 450,000 sq. ft. of space at one of its offices in Gurgaon.
With one of the main trends in flex office space to emerge during COVID-19 being enterprises turning to coworking as a long-term, decentralized solution, Simpliwork will stand to benefit in future months. In fact, the operator has already delivered over 1.2 million sq. ft. to enterprise clients post-Covid.
At its forthcoming Pune location, Simpliwork will be one of the first businesses to occupy Sky One Corporate Park, the new three million sq. ft. commercial project led by Lunkad Realty. This will be the operator’s first office Pune, where they are aiming to accommodate approximately 2,500 employees of Fortune 500 enterprises at this location soon.
“Simpliwork Offices was evaluating the most strategic location for launching their first office in Pune,” said Bajaj. “Based on our advice and market intelligence, Simpliwork chose Viman Nagar due to low vacancy and limited future supply of Grade A projects.”
Today’s coworking clients prefer versatile operators that can offer complete CapEx and flexible OpEx solutions, thus enhancing the member experience. Owing to its proximity to the airport, upcoming metro, huge residential catchment, and established social infrastructure, Viman Nagar is a sought-after destination for MNCs as well as large Indian corporates.
What does this signal for the future?
Not only does Simpliwork Offices’ latest lease in Pune provide evidence of the growing Indian market for coworking, which has been notoriously fast-expanding (even in Tier II and Tier III cities). But the expansion also shows that recovery is on track for the flex office industry at large, with Simpliwork being one of many operators to turn to enterprise solutions as a useful monetization tool in the current work environment.