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Despite the epidemic, the office sector operates “better than anticipated.”

Megaworld Corp. said it had booked approximately 415,000 square meters of office leases since the coronavirus pandemic began early last year, reversing the expected consequences of the epidemic.

Approximately 60% of the lease contracts signed since last year were renewals, with the other 40% being new leases, mainly in the information technology (IT) and business process outsourcing (BPO) industries.

New leases and renewals were secured in its Mactan Newtown township in Cebu, Eastwood City, McKinley Hill, Uptown Bonifacio, Southwoods City in Binan, Laguna, and Davao Park District in Davao City in the first half of this year alone.

โ€œIn the first part of the year, almost 80% of these leases were renewals. This implies that BPO firms choose to remain and keep their offices. This also demonstrates the strength and durability of the office market in our pioneering townships,โ€ said Kevin Tan, Megaworld’s chief strategy officer, in a statement on Thursday.

Megaworld’s Southwoods Office Towers within the 561-hectare Southwoods City were completely leased earlier this year after an American renewable energy business and a BPO firm specialized in customer care solutions acquired the remaining spaces.

During the first part of this year, four floors of the Davao Finance Center, located inside the 11-hectare Davao Park District, were leased to one of the country’s biggest BPO firms.

โ€œThe township model works in our favor. These continuous take-ups of office premises, even in the midst of neighborhood lockdowns, can be seen not just in Metro Manila but also in major growth areas throughout the provinces. We are extremely pleased and enthusiastic about how the office sector has performed so far since it has outperformed expectations,โ€ Tan added.

Megaworld’s top offices remain 90 percent occupied, with certain townships, such as Iloilo Business Park, achieving 100 percent.

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