The Carlyle Group has moved into London’s flexible and co-working sector by acquiring an operating business and three properties.
The private equity firm said it has bought a co-working platform managed by the Adir Group, including the operational business and an 18,000sqft operational co-working office in Islington
The business is to be rebranded as Uncommon and will be expanded through the acquisition of a 25,000qft building in Borough and a 26,000sqft building in Fulham.
The Adir Group will continue to manage the expanded platform, which will have approximately 1300 desks, in joint venture with Carlyle.
Carlyle said it will continue to expand the business over the next 18 to 24 months by buying assets in London locations with strong transport connections.
Carlyle said changing working patterns and the increased need for cost-effective space in London “will continue to drive demand for flexible, collaborative workplaces”.
It said: “Against this backdrop, Uncommon aims to capitalise on growing demand from both established companies and an increasing number of small businesses and start-ups in the capital.”
Peter Stoll, Managing Director at The Carlyle Group, said: “As an emerging sector, we see the market for new concept working environments continuing to strengthen.
“An increasing number of businesses favour the flexibility and collaborative nature that this type of space offers. This, coupled with our belief that London will continue be a global centre of business and innovation, gives us confidence in our strategy.
“Being both the owner of the property and owner-operator of the business sets us apart from the flexible office competition.”
Chris Davies, director at the Adir Group, said: “Over the last few years there has been a major shift in the office market. Managed office space is no longer the preserve of the unambitious, bland occupier.
“People demand interesting and versatile space that is flexible enough to adapt as they do. This is appealing to start-ups and far larger businesses – our largest occupier currently has 226 employees.”