IWG exploring sale and lease-back office deals


Flexible workspace provider IWG Plc is exploring the possibility of selling and leasing back its office spaces, as it looks to raise between £200m and £250m to ease the impact of coronavirus.

IWG (international Workplace Group) owns brands including Regus, Spaces, HQ, Signature by Regus, Basepoint, Openoffice and BizDojo, among others. It has 367 UK locations, along with many others in North America, EMEA and Asia Pacific.

The company is reportedly considering selling and then leasing back more than 10 of its UK office buildings, with chartered surveyor Doherty Baines said to be advising IWG on the move.

Regus has reportedly been recently criticised by several of its small business tenants, who say the company has attempted to tie them to longer leases in exchanges for temporary reductions in the rent on office spaces that they cannot use.

Regus chief executive officer Mark Dixon has said that tenants have been made fair offers. Regus has also been served with a statutory demand by a consulting firm for withholding its deposit, which is worth two months’ rent. Dixon has denied that the payment is late.

According to its most recent accounts, from the year ending December 31 2018, Regus Group Ltd has total current assets worth £351 million.

The coronavirus pandemic has had a particular impact on the office space sector, with IWG's shares reportedly down two-thirds from the start of the year, as of the beginning of April.

One of the best ways to find properties below market price is to look at recent administrations.

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