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Morgan Stanley commits to Canary Wharf home until at least 2038

Published 04/03/2024, 08:23 AM
Updated 04/03/2024, 08:27 AM
© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: A view of the Morgan Stanley London headquarters at Canary Wharf financial centre in London, Britain June 24, 2016.       REUTERS/Russell Boyce/File Photo

LONDON (Reuters) - Morgan Stanley's UK arm has extended a lease on its 547,000 square foot European headquarters in London's Canary Wharf to 2038, committing to the Docklands financial hub even as rivals relocate in search of smaller offices.

In a statement on Wednesday, Morgan Stanley's Chief Operating Officer for Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA) Chris Beatty said the U.S. bank was "looking forward to witnessing the next stages of Canary Wharf's evolution first hand".

"Canary Wharf has been the location for our EMEA headquarters for over 30 years and we're pleased to be extending that tenure," Beatty said.

Last June HSBC said it was quitting its 45-floor skyscraper, one of the district's landmark buildings, for a smaller, lower-rise property in the City of London.

The decision raised questions about whether Canary Wharf could continue to hold onto the world's biggest financial occupiers, but last December British bank Barclays also pledged to stay in its One Churchill Place tower until 2039.

© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: A view of the Morgan Stanley London headquarters at Canary Wharf financial centre in London, Britain June 24, 2016.       REUTERS/Russell Boyce/File Photo

Many of London's largest offices have emptied out since the pandemic, with thousands of employees ditching long and expensive commutes in favour of hybrid working patterns.

Top London-focused landlords are hoping that environmentally compliant buildings in prime locations will earn higher rents as tenants become more selective about their office requirements.

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