Office Hamburg 4Q2018

Second highest total since records began

Press release | Hamburg

Throughout the year 2018 business was brisk on Hamburg’s office property market and the year closed with total take-up of 590,000 m². Although some 8% less space was let than in the prior year, the year-end result is still the second-highest seen since records began. In the final three months of the year 2018 tenants and owner-occupiers concluded agreements for 160,000 m². These figures are taken from a survey by Grossmann & Berger, a member of German Property Partners (GPP). “The reduced take-up is partly a result of the shortage of available space. Firms requiring large suites of offices are increasingly likely to select premises off plan. In 2018 a good half of all large suites were taken in new builds,” explains Andreas Rehberg, managing director of Grossmann & Berger, adding; “Considering the lack of alternative locations, tenants, especially those renting large amounts, now tend to approach their landlords to negotiate renewals of existing leases. They therefore often postpone the search for new premises in the hope of a change on the market.”
Biggest agreements in the first three quarters
Overall in 2018 firms requiring over 5,000 m² of office space signed 15 agreements accounting for about 27% of the total take-up. Beiersdorf was the front runner in this field, with the start of construction on their new 45,000 m² headquarters (Troplowitzstrasse, Eimsbüttel). The second biggest agreement was signed in the 3rd quarter, when Postbank rented 13,800 m² of office space in the “Ipanema” new build development (Überseering 28, City North). Likewise in the 3rd quarter the IT company akquinet agreed to rent 12,000 m² off plan in the “Bramfelder Spitze” (Bramfelder Chaussee 106-112, Hamburg East), posting  the third-biggest let of the year. Only three agreements for large amounts of space were added in the 4th quarter. For example, the Bank Deutsches Kraftfahrzeuggewerbe, a car loan bank owned by the Société Générale Group from France, signed an agreement for some 10,500 m² of office space in the “SG Campus”, an ECE development project (Fuhlsbüttler Strasse/Hebebrandstrasse, Hamburg East). Essity, a manufacturer of hygiene products, has taken some 5,800 m² off plan in the “PKI” new build development (Schützenstrasse 1‑3, Bahrenfeld) and the coworking space provider WeWork opted for 5,100 m² in the “Gerhof” (Gerhofstrasse 1-3, City).

5 biggest known agreements, Hamburg 1st - 4th quarters of 2018
Lessee Property/project Road/street Sub-market Size in m²
Beiersdorf New headquarters Troplowitzstrasse Eimsbüttel 45,000
Postbank Ipanema offices Überseering 28 City North 13,800
akquinet “Bramfelder Spitze” Bramfelder Chaussee 106-112 Hamburg East 12,000
BDK SG Campus Fuhlsbüttler Strasse/ Hebebrandstrasse Hamburg East 10,500
Signal Iduna Vattenfall building Überseering 12 City North 10,000
Source: Grossmann & Berger GmbH

Large contracts boost Hamburg East
As in the prior year, City ranked ahead of all other sub-markets in 2018. Some 127,700 m² or about 22% of the total take-up was transacted in Hamburg’s central sub-market. One reason for the high volume recorded in City was the successful letting of office space in the “Tower am Michel” (Ludwig-Erhard-Strasse 22), which contributed some 14,800 m² to the final tally. City South occupied second place with a share of 15%. However, take-up here sank from 115,300 m² in 2017 to 89,600 m² (-22%). Four contracts signed in the first three quarters may be numbered among the biggest agreements in this sub-market, and were signed by: Design Offices (about 8,600 m², Wendenstrasse 14-18), f & w fördern und wohnen (about 8,500 m², Heidenkampsweg 96-98), the Ministry for Urban Development and Housing (about 6,900 m², Nagelsweg 47) and Europcar (about 5,600 m² in the “Berliner Bogen”, Anckelmannsplatz 1). The third-ranked sub-market was Hamburg East with a share of 11%. Take-up of space in the eastern districts outside the classic office zones rose year on year from 26,900 m² to 63,000 m². Some 30,000 m² of this significant growth stemmed from the agreement signed by akquinet in the “Bramfelder Spitze” development plus two contracts signed by Société Générale Group for space the “SG Campus” development.
Even spread across various industries
Take-up in 2018 was distributed fairly evenly among the various sectors of trade and industry. IT and telecoms companies were a whisker ahead of other segments. Overall, this sector posted 12% of take-up (71,600 m²), a total to which akquinet and the US social media firm alone contributed some 16,000 m². Returning shares of 11% of take-up each, construction & property came second, closely followed by tourism and transport. Firms from the construction and property industries accounted for a total volume of some 65,500 m². As in the prior year, coworking space and business centre providers played a crucial role by adding 27,400 m² to the result. Tourism and transport firms rented 64,400 m² of space. More than a third of this figure stemmed from six agreements for more than 3,000 m² of space, signed by Europcar, Lufthansa, Zeaborn, Ocean Network Express and Kühne + Nagel.
Strong rise in rents
Year on year there has been a strong rise in both premium and average rents which have climbed to new record levels. The premium rent rose by 5.8% to close the year 2018 at €27.50/m²/month. During the same period average rents across the whole of Hamburg rose by 3.9% from €15.20 to €15.80/m²/month. “Numerous rental agreements in new builds or buildings with as-new space in the city centre which command correspondingly high rentals lay behind this growth,” comments Andreas Rehberg. Overall, take-up of some 323,000 m² fell into this category in 2018. Thus the proportion of space taken in such properties rose year on year from 43% to 55%.
Availability remains problematic
No improvement on the market for office space in Hamburg was discernible by the close of the year. Although the vacancy rate remained equal to the prior quarter’s 3.5%, the shortage of available space in some areas continued to limit take-up activity. At the end of the 4th quarter some 477,000 m² of office space was available at short notice, 100,000 m² less than a year ago. The high pre-letting ratio of 63% (196,000 m²) means that the amount of space on the open market will not change radically in 2019 or 2020. Overall, the anticipated volume of completions in the next two years is 313,000 m².

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Press contact

Berit Friedrich

Bleichenbrücke 9
20354 Hamburg

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