Portsmouth’s leading workspace, Lakeside North Harbour, has secured its second-largest deal on the Solent Corridor since the last COVID-19 lockdown, as leading insurance broker Markerstudy Broking takes 11,259 sq ft of space.
The relocation of Markerstudy Broking’s pet, gadget and ancillary insurance business from its current premises on Kingston Crescent, Portsmouth, follows an 18-month period of rapid growth as pet ownership soared during the pandemic, with an additional 3.2 million UK households acquiring a pet.
Markerstudy Broking’s pet insurance business provides pet insurance solutions to UK high street brands and insurers, as well as direct brands Purely Pets and Petwise that reached the milestone of more than 100,000 customers in 2021. Supercover is Markerstudy Broking’s gadget and ancillary insurance business that provides mobile, gadget, tools, key, personal accident, excess protection and replacement vehicle insurance.
The five year deal also comes at a time of strong economic growth in Portsmouth, as new data from Portsmouth City Council reveals a growth rate of 0.5 per cent in August, higher than the national average (0.4 per cent).
Markerstudy Broking is expected to relocate to Lakeside in February 2022 and will join a diverse collection of existing occupiers already benefiting from Lakeside’s modern facilities, unique surroundings and vibrant community, including IBM, Virgin Media and Capita. The destination recently announced a string of new occupiers, Eco House Solutions, Visitor Chat and Service Supply Network.
Lakeside’s 130-acre campus is unique for its immediate access to acres of blue and green space and plethora of opportunities to connect with nature on site, supporting employee mental health and wellbeing.
Simon Bateman, asset manager at Lakeside North Harbour, commented:
“Lakeside North Harbour is securing rising attention from high-calibre businesses for its unique proposition; our five-year deal with Markerstudy Broking is a reflection of this, as well as Portsmouth’s strong economic performance and increased confidence in businesses in investing in office space following the pandemic.
“Employee mental health and wellbeing, and the importance of access to outdoor space, has really come to the fore over the past year. We’re pleased to be able to offer modern office space that supports health and wellbeing as well as business productivity.
“It’s also encouraging to see continued high demand for quality office space and proves that businesses value being part of Portsmouth’s vibrant and friendly community – this is testament to the city’s strong reputation as a great place to start and grow a business.”
Approximately 150 employees will be based in Markerstudy Broking’s new dedicated telephony and digital customer service centre at Lakeside. The space will consist of an open plan office suite, together with partitioned offices, and will benefit from carpets, suspended ceilings and recessed lighting, comfort cooling and heating systems, all supporting employee productivity and comfort.
Ross Hallifax, Affinity Director at Markerstudy Broking, commented:
“Our team has expanded substantially over the last 18 months following a period of rapid growth and increasing customer demand. This is due to continue into 2022 and we’re excited about the opportunities this will bring to our business. As part of the burgeoning Markerstudy Group, we have a number of award-winning brands, partner with leading insurers and price comparison websites and offer our employees a fantastic place to work.
“Our current premises are no longer fit for purpose; we needed attractive, modern space that would enable us to continue to deliver exceptional customer service, while also having the room to continue to grow.
“Lakeside’s modern facilities and fast access to a wide range of amenities, including a gym, hotel, and shops on site, as well as its abundance of blue and green space and the opportunity to be close to nature, was a major contributing factor in our decision, as we can offer our employees a beautiful environment and unrivalled convenience.
“Lakeside was the ideal choice for us, and presented a great opportunity for a ‘new beginning’ in the New Year to drive the business forward.”
Vail Williams acted on behalf of Lakeside North Harbour to secure the deal.
Russell Mogridge, Lead Partner at Vail Williams’ Agency team, added:
“Lakeside continues to attract businesses located on the Solent Corridor as they search for high quality working environments to boost recruitment, staff welfare and motivation in a safe place to work after the COVID-19 pandemic.
“No other location in the Solent region has secured as many new occupiers as Lakeside over the last two years.”