AXA IM Alts has agreed a £20.6m forward funding agreement to develop a 107,660 sq ft high tech manufacturing facility in Bristol.
I commented recently in my Talking Points article that there were a number of key areas being looked at by the industrial/warehouse market as a whole and, happily, these can be seen in action in this deal.
Space/location - The new site is at Central Approach, Bristol. This is out of town, in an area already home to a number of logistics companies and served by very strong road links to the M5 (Midlands-South West), M4 (London-South Wales) and M49 (M5-Second Severn Bridge link).
Employee experience - The development is due to include fibre connectivity, cycle spaces, shower facilities, high quality landscaping, multiple EV charging spaces for cars and bright, airy office space.
Environmental - AXA is specifically looking to develop the site to achieve strong sustainability credentials, including a BREEAM Very Good rating.
Leasing structure - The site has been fully pre-let to Oxford Instruments (a leading manufacturing and research firm), on an impressively long 20 year lease. Whilst the term length is perhaps unusual for the current market, given that development of the site is not due to complete until March 2022, this is presumably off-set by the level of input OI will be able to have over the project as it progresses.
The one Talking Point not seen in action as part of this deal is freeports. Whilst a bid was made for a Bristol freeport, the 2021 Budget did not allocate a freeport to the area and so the initiative cannot be taken advantage of here.