SMEs with up to 250 employees leasing 46 pct of the Romanian modern office space

Razvan Zamfir 11/12/2018 | 12:00

Small and mid-sized enterprises (SMEs) with up to 250 employees have leased office space of up to 2,500 sqm, accounting for 46 percent of the office space market in Romania, according to an analysis by Esop Consulting for the first three quarters.

The engine is the segment of medium-sized companies with between 50 and 249 employees, which leased 114,367 sqm, representing 83 percent of the surface leased by all SMEs.  

“The market is balanced, in terms of the volume of space leased by SMEs and large companies. The most powerful segments that rent most of the office space are mid-sized companies with between 50 and 249 employees and large companies with more than 250 employees. As a trend, we noticed the development of coworking office space operators, renting large areas of more than 1,000 square meters, sometimes even over 3,000-4,000 square meters, targeting micro-enterprise customers and even SMEs with between 10 and 49 employees, especially IT & C. We believe this trend will continue. At the same time, there is an increasing flexibility of developers of class A office buildings who want to have a mix of tenants in large projects. Thus, if some developers split the floors into two modules in the first stage, they now have to divide the floors into four modules, offering to rent 300-600 square meters of space, depending on the size of the floor on each floor,” says Alexandru Petrescu, Managing Partner at Esop Consulting/CORFAC International.

The largest volume of leased Class A and B premises (approximately 96 percent) is achieved by medium-sized firms (which account for only 1.8 percent of the total Romanian firms, but have 21 percent of the total number of employees, according to the latest data by Eurostat) and large companies (which account for only 0.4 percent and have 36 percent of the total Romanian employees).

Most companies are micro-enterprises (up to 10 employees), accounting for 97.7 percent of the total Romanian firms and 44.4 percent of the total number of employees. However, they rent the smallest office space directly from the owners of new buildings, occupying about 4 percent of the total A-class office space. Because developers offer few options in new buildings for micro-businesses that want to have their headquarters in modern buildings, they focus on coworking spaces.

Big companies who leased office spaces in 2018

Large companies account for 0.4 percent of all firms, but office transactions by firms in this category took up 54 percent of the modern office market. Large companies that moved in 2018 or pre-leased office space in 2018 to move in 2019-2020 include UPC, Dell, PWC, Thales, Microsoft, Deloitte, London Stock Exchange, Schlumberger, ING etc.

In Romania, according to the latest statistics provided by Eurostat, 44.4 percent of employees work in micro-enterprises, 20.9 percent in mid-sized companies and 34.6 percent in large companies.

At the European level, the situation is similar – in the European Union, on average, micro-enterprises have 49.3 percent of total employees, mid-sized companies 17.1 percent and large companies concentrate 33.7 percent.

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