IQ Winnersh attracting new tenantsBy Alan Bunce
January 24, 2013
In spite of all the troubles of the business and property worlds, IQ Winnersh attracted eight new tenants in 2012.
The SEGRO-owned business park has been redeveloped in recent years and is now one of the few locations bringing Grade A office space to the Thames Valley.
The major names already there have helped build a reputation which has, in turn, helped attract more big names in recent years.
The total is now 40 including Virgin Media, Jacobs, QlikView and Harris Systems representing IT, defence, engineering and communications.
Around 3,000 people are employed on the park and which now plays host to impressive facilities.
Park owner SEGRO now offers a landscaped setting, its own train station, a four-star hotel with a gym and swimming pool, cafes, shops and now even a children’s indoor play park.
And at the beginning of last year, QlikView – provider of data management software to business – moved into IQ Winnersh’s landmark development, Building 1020.
Qlikview managing director and regional vice president Northern Europe Sean Farrington said: “Our new offices will provide the facilities to enable us to continue to meet growing customer demand and position us as a key player in the enterprise and business technology world.”
QlikView has since been joined by facilities services business Fisco UK Ltd, security company Cyber-Ark Software, clinical research business Octagon Research Solutions Limited, natural sweetener supplier Pure Circle and coatings manufacturer Valspar.
Two of the newer customers are Kids ‘n’ Action and The Fitter’s Friend.
With room for 400 children, Kids ‘n’ Action is Berkshire’s largest indoor play and party centre and has proved extremely popular, while The Fitter’s Friend sells conservatories to the trade.
Technology specialists based at IQ Winnersh played an important role in the success of the London 2012 Olympics. Atos was praised by the president of the International Olympic Committee for delivering the most digitally enabled Games in history.
The firm helped put the systems in place for more than eight million ticket holders and four billion people around the world to watch the Games via multiple media channels and devices.
Design of the park has been based on enabling employees to work, play and socialise in an attractive environment. Allowing collaboration and a good work/life balance were high on the agenda.
An annual events programme ranges from business networking to cultural activities and support groups. Employees can learn new skills through the Learning Lunches programme and all spaces on the Spanish course have been filled with many interested in future sessions.
Staff at firms at IQ Winnersh can also support good causes.
In recent years, it has proved a useful stop for NHS Blood and Transplant service and the tri-annual sessions routinely see around 100 volunteers queuing to give blood.
Last year Easter, the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee and Christmas were celebrated by major events.
A summer lunch and a Christmas Fayre both attracted more than 1,000 people.
Food suppliers and stall holders were local and carols were performed by nearby Bearwood Primary School.
One of the major major advantages for IQ Winnersh has always been having its own railway station and this year there are plans for additional trains.
Road infrastructure creates easy access to the A329M, the M4, London and Heathrow.
In March, SEGRO will unveil the latest stage of its redevelopment when E² goes on the market.
When it is launched E², a speculative refurbishment of an existing building, will represent a significant milestone for the development of the park, providing nearly 50,000sq ft of premium Grade A office space.
Contractors stripped the existing building right back to its frame and built it back up to a modern high spec.
It will have large open plan floorplates of 23,000sq ft and has a high car parking ratio of 1:240sq ft.
Occupiers will have self-contained changing facilities with showers and a drying room, as well as electric car charging points and use of an electric car.
SEGRO expects to achieve an excellent rating from BREEAM (Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Method).
With ever-increasing environmental requirements SEGRO recently commissioned global real estate network Corenet to conduct research looking at the impact of the forthcoming Energy Act in the UK.
The E² launch will be one of many major events at IQ Winnersh in 2013.
SEGRO will be adding new dates to the events calendar to create more opportunities to bring the business community together.
Some of these will be focused around key business issues, working in conjunction with national stakeholder groups such as CBI.
SEGRO is also keen to gather the business community behind important causes and initiatives and will mark key national awareness days and charity fundraisers.
A conference will be held to launch the findings of research commissioned by SEGRO into the impact of the Energy Act by global real estate network Corenet.
Further events are likely to have an environmental slant such as Earth Hour or Bike Week, while others will be more educational such as National Science and Engineering Week. Where possible, SEGRO plans to team up with the wider community, such as local schools and colleges.
Kate Dean, director of offices for SEGRO in the Thames Valley, said: “Our plans to develop Reading’s leading business location at IQ Winnersh are continuing apace with some exciting new customers, better amenities and an even better programme of events planned for 2013.
“We are proud of the quality of the companies based here, including the plethora of leading global brands. But IQ Winnersh is more than ‘just a place to work’, it has all the social and lifestyle elements that companies demand from today’s modern workplace.”
RIDER Levett Bucknall UK Ltd and UKBiFold are the newest firms to take space at 1,000 Eskdale Road at IQ Winnersh.
Rider Levett Bucknall UK Ltd is a global property and construction practice with more than 100 offices across Asia, Oceania, Europe, Middle East and the Americas.
UK BiFold provides aluminium bi-fold doors and will use its 2,800sq ft as retail and showroom space.
Simon Kerton of Rider Levett Bucknall UK Ltd said: “We look forward to moving into this high quality office space.
“Being located in such a prime location with excellent transport links and the flexible leases offered is what attracted us to IQ Winnersh Business Park. Our employees are looking forward to making the most of all the amenities on site at the park.”
Frank Tate, UKBiFold, said: “We carried out a lot of research to find the most suitable space to showcase our products in the south of the country.
“IQ Winnersh is the ideal location for us to reach our customer base.
“We are sure that our staff and clients will appreciate the on-site amenities.”
SEGRO’s Kate Dean is delighted at the new tenants.
She said: “We are pleased to begin the year by welcoming two new businesses at IQ Winnersh Business Park.
“Rider Levett Bucknall UK Ltd and UKBiFold join a growing community of leading businesses operating from IQ Winnersh. New customers will benefit from our first-class amenities and unique sense of community.”
Knowledge is key to company’s growth
One IQ Winnersh business has expanded and grown at pace throughout the economic downturn.
In September 2012 KnowledgePoint’s Eskdale Road site roughly doubled in size when it added 20,000 sq ft.
The firm, which has a head office in Earley, has increased turnover by around 50 per cent throughout the last five years while the UK’s economy struggled. It provides courseware including all the necessary text books, stationery and other materials for employers’ training courses. Everything a course provider needs is packaged and delivered to the venue. It even prints the textbooks.
KnowledgePoint sells to countries within Europe, the Middle East and Africa while its KnoweledgeCast division sell the same services further afield.
A more recent addition is Engage which provides education programs, certification and courseware for the IT training industry.
KnowledgePoint expects these sections to grow further in 2013.
Director Paul Gibbons, who founded the business along with Andre Philpot, said: “The growth of our different service streams will allow us to deliver a focused service to varying global customer requirements and develop business delivery to match market expansion.”