IWG partners with AEW Capital Management to open first Signature location in Manhattan

IWG partners with AEW Capital Management to open first Signature location in Manhattan

Amid rising demand for hybrid work solutions, this luxurious new facility will offer 58,000sqft of workspace in a prestigious New York address.

As vaccination programmes around the world allow office doors to reopen, many business leaders are reconsidering their use of real estate. 

After more than a year of working remotely, employees are expressing their desire for more flexible working practices. According to a report from Forrester, 70% of US and EU companies are expected to adopt a hybrid working model, post-pandemic. 

Meanwhile, a study by PwC found that 83% of employers believe the shift to remote working has been successful for their company, with fewer than one in five executives keen to return to the office as it was before Covid-19.

Hybrid working – an approach that allows employees to split their time between the company office, home and a third location such as a nearby flexible workspace – is now the preferred model for firms including NTT, Standard Chartered and Cisco. All three have signed deals with IWG in 2021, providing their people with access to local, professionally equipped office space. 

Such partnerships allow companies to scale back their owned or leased property, reducing their overheads and providing them with an agility that most traditional contracts can’t match. Altogether, IWG has added two million new users to its network of flexible workspaces this year - the biggest increase in its 30-year history.

It’s no wonder, therefore, that IWG data shows that global demand for flexible workspace increased by 15% in June 2021 alone. In the USA, specifically, demand for flexspace soared by 43% year-on-year, and in order to meet this need new centres are opening across the country. 

Signature Manhattan: luxurious workspace with five-star service

Among IWG’s raft of new locations is Signature Manhattan – a new facility that will offer 58,000sqft of luxurious workspace to those seeking a professional work setting that’s close to home or public transport. 

The location, at 250 Park Avenue, is a joint venture between IWG and landlord AEW Capital Management. A commercial office building with retail space in Midtown Manhattan, the space has been updated with a new infrastructure, HVAC system, fibre-optic phone lines and elevator mechanicals. The redevelopment has also included the installation of new windows, restrooms and a modern lobby area, as well as a state-of-the-art security system that uses Apple technology to streamline employee and guest check-ins.

Signature, part of IWG’s stable of flexible workspace brands, provides workplaces in the world’s most iconic buildings. Designed to offer impeccable attention to detail and a level of service typically seen in a five-star hotel, Signature locations can be found in top tier cities around the globe including London, Tokyo, Paris and – with the opening of Signature Manhattan – New York. 

Located above Grand Central Station, Signature Manhattan boasts four meeting and board rooms, plus a mix of private offices and coworking spaces with more than 200 workstations. Offering easy access to a wide variety of public transport links, Signature Manhattan is just a short walk away from an abundance of shops, cafés, bars and restaurants. The space has also been optimised to include a dynamic, customisable video ceiling that will display a rotating gallery of curated works by established and emerging local artists. 

Partners for the hybrid future 

“We are pleased to be working with our long-standing partner AEW in the repositioning of 250 Park Avenue as a five-star destination at the centre of Midtown Manhattan,” says Michael Berretta, Vice President of Network Development for the Americas at IWG. “We couldn’t have asked for a more fitting location for the opening of our first Signature in New York.”

Meanwhile, IWG Founder and CEO Mark Dixon believes the launch is emblematic of the accelerating trend for hybrid working. “The opening of this latest location is a demonstration of renewed confidence in the New York City market and will meet the growing demand for hybrid work solutions,” he says. 

The unveiling of Signature Manhattan comes hot on the heels of strong network growth for IWG: more than 84 new locations encompassing 2.6 million square feet of space have opened in 2021 so far. David L Hoffman, Jr, speaking on behalf of landlord AEW, agrees that the future is bright for the industry. “We are very optimistic about the sustainable appeal of flexible office space in today’s environment,” he says.

Exciting opportunities

For landlords concerned about the future for traditional commercial property, pivoting to provide flexible workspace represents an exciting opportunity. 

IWG’s scale and heritage make it the ideal choice for many landlords and franchise partners looking to break into the sector. Founded more than 30 years ago and with more than 3,500 locations across the globe, it offers a variety of workspace brands that cater for different types of customers. 

“The pandemic has had a dramatic and permanent effect [on the world of work],” Dixon explains. “But it’s merely accelerated a trend that’s been under way for several years – one that is irreversible.” The days ahead are bright for property owners and investors, he insists, if they’re ready and willing to adapt: “The future of work is already with us,” Dixon concludes. “And it’s only going to improve.” 

Flexible workspace is the fastest-growing sector of the global workplace market. Make the most of this investment opportunity by partnering with IWG today.