Newly-refurbished Ascent 3 lands Discover Financial Services signing

Hermes Investment Management, the £33.5 billion fund manager, has announced that the Grade A Ascent 3 building at Farnborough Aerospace Centre has secured Discover Financial Services, a leading direct banking and payments services company, which is taking almost 46,000 sq ft for its new UK head office.

Relocating from Farnborough’s town centre, Discover Financial Services is taking a 12-year lease at the contemporary fully refurbished building. Situated within this prestigious business park in the M3 corridor, Ascent 3 is one of four buildings owned by Hermes Investment Management at Farnborough Aerospace since 2015. The building has been transformed and rebranded as part of an extensive phased redevelopment programme designed by Hale Architecture. It is due for completion in March this year, along with the 75,000 sq ft Ascent 1 building.

The office’s extensive restoration forms part of a wider investment in the business park as a whole, where commitment to enhancing on-site facilities is set to continue, with a gym, café, restaurant and dedicated shuttle service already on offer.

Ian Cody, Director – Asset Management, Hermes Investment Management, said: “With an increase in innovative blue chip companies joining Farnborough’s renowned traditional occupiers, this signing proves Hermes Investment Management’s decision to invest capital in the Ascent estate is a timely response to a market gap. We are pleased to welcome Discover Financial Services to Ascent 3 as our first new tenant, and look forward to seeing the company reap the benefits of the building and wider Farnborough Aerospace Centre offering.”

Jeremy Rodale, Partner, Cushman & Wakefield, said: “Discover Financial Services was looking for an excellent working environment for its staff, and we are thrilled to meet this need with the signing at the redeveloped Ascent 3 building. It is a fantastic endorsement for Ascent, and the ever-improving amenities at Farnborough Aerospace Centre. We are confident this marks the beginning of an exciting working community as we continue to liaise with numerous other occupiers keen to acquire space.”

Hermes Investment Management appointed Canmoor as strategic advisors throughout the refurbishment and letting process. Cushman & Wakefield and Hollis Hockley acted as leasing agents for Hermes, whilst CBRE acted for Discover Financial Services.

The Ascent buildings equate to 250,000 sq ft of office space with over 1,200 parking spaces. Farnborough Aerospace Centre is the corporate headquarters for BAE Systems with Zurich Insurance, Infor, Fluor and Lockheed Martin also represented on the estate. Well-connected and just minutes away from Farnborough town centre, providing direct trains to London Waterloo (30 minutes), the Ascent buildings are also adjacent to Farnborough Airport (private charter) and in close proximity to Heathrow and Gatwick airports. The A3 and Jct4 of the M3 are also both easily accessible, providing excellent connectivity for occupiers’ employees.