Perhaps we should whisper it, but the future of UK real estate looks bright, doesn’t it?

As Venture celebrates its first anniversary, we also reflect on exceptional levels of market fluctuation. Like most involved in commercial property, activity didn’t drop off for Venture during periods of restricted working, rather, restrictions made the method of delivery slightly more challenging.

The return to office working, face-to-face client contact, and being out in the field are very much welcomed, but we have not forgotten the lessons of agility learnt during the pandemic. They say crisis breeds innovation, and adapting to these changes has certainly made us all a little more nimble.   

For Venture, the market is buoyant; certain sectors are thriving like never before.

Delivering confident, timely and innovative advice

Our pre- and post-funding residential due diligence expertise has helped clients get upwards of 3,000 beds into production this year, with a strong pipeline to follow. Private Equity and institutional investors say they need confident, timely and innovative advice to compete in an accelerating residential landscape, and that’s exactly what we deliver.

Our project managers are delivering consistently strong levels of speculative office refurbishment. It may seem a contradiction to the current hybrid working rhetoric, but investors have clearly foreseen that the traditional working model has a long-term place in real estate. If our pipeline of 500,000sq. ft of new build and refurbished office space is seen as a barometer, the office is far from dead.

The darling of the property market for some time, demand for industrial and logistics remains high, with supplies running low. Our sector specialists are advising on acquisitions, fund monitoring and delivering circa 1,000,000sq. ft of new build and refurbished space across the UK.

However, the well-documented issue of construction inflation seems to be primarily impacting the industrial and logistics development sector, because of the demand for the stock and construction methods that go with it. Steel, concrete, cladding are the most sensitive materials, some of which have suffered 20% cost increases over the past 12 months. Specialist procurement strategies can be implemented to temper these issues, and we are working with clients to reduce the impact on industrial and logistics viability.

Carving out value

Retail seems to have turned a corner, albeit the road to full recovery will be long and convoluted. In this sector, repurposing of space is Venture’s primary activity. Hammerson’s Bullring Debenhams to M&S deal has been such a process, taking a unit bespoke to one operator and altering to accommodate another, while carving out value through the creation of mixed-use leisure spaces as part of the process.

By far the biggest shift we have seen over the past 12 months is the emphasis on sustainability. Once a box-ticking exercise for investors, ESG is now a pre-requisite, with sustainability at the heart of Venture’s approach.

With our ability to draw on intelligent building technology such as IBOS, via Workman’s Building Technology team, and in-house Net Zero carbon and sustainability specialists in our ESG team, we have been able to provide clients with early and ongoing sustainability advice. This translates to practical and economic asset-level interventions.

Our clients tell us that their corporate governance back-end liquidity requirements mean this advice is central to their decision making. We have responded with further investment in our ESG resource, to ensure we are best placed to assist.  

The Venture team is growing. As we look forward, we will be introducing the Venture team members, sharing our experiences, and hopefully prompting discussion through thought leadership around burning industry issues that make an impact on our clients’ investments.

By Nick Clark, Partner, Head of Venture, Workman Project Management

Read more on Venture’s work here > Projects Archive – Venture (

Read more about our intelligent building technology IBOS

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