02:04, August 07 83 0

2017-08-07 02:04:07
Sidley Austin on the hunt for new 120,000 sq ft London office

US firm Sidley Austin has begun its search for new London offices as the firm’s lease on its current home in The City nears an end.

It is understood that the firm has narrowed down its search to two sites as it looks for 120,000 sq ft of office space to replace its current home on floors 6-8 at Woolgate Exchange, 25 Basinghall Street.

Woolgate Exchange is listed as Grade A office space which, according to Savills City Office Market Report 2017, was costing costing Sidley Austin £57.17 per sq ft in June.

The firm has had a presence in London for 23 years since opening its doors at the Royal Exchange Building in 1994. It relocated to 1 Threadneedle Street four years later before leasing 78,288 sq ft in Woolgate Exchange. The firm has spent more than 13 years at its present location since moving in March 2004 with the current lease running until 2020.

London managing partner Matthew Dening told The Lawyer: “All I can confirm at the moment is that we are nearing the end of our lease and we are looking for new space.”

Should the firm choose to stay within EC2, there are two properties which would fit the size criteria.

The Spice Building, 8 Devonshire Sq and 1 Appold Street currently have 123,856 and 126,513 sq ft of space available respectively. Two London Wall Place has 117,134 sq ft should the firm choose to compromise on its requirements. If current rental trends hold, it could mean the firm paying between £7.1m and £7.2m.

According to The Lawyer US Top 50 2017, Sidley Austin has 117 lawyers based in London including 39 partners. In 2016, the office generated $101.9m (£77.5m).

The firm raided US rival Kirkland & Ellis for six private equity partners in February 2016 and recently outlined its new 15-year private equity strategy as well as naming Christian Iwasko as its new head of the sector following Stephen Blackshaw’s departure in June.