Big companies are redefining the meaning of the HQ for the 21st century

Big companies are redefining the meaning of the HQ for the 21st century

From tech giants to professional services, the world of work is thinking differently when it comes to corporate digs


In the second half of the 20th century, a gleaming headquarters on Fifth Avenue in New York, the square mile in London or on the waterfront in Hong Kong was the ultimate marker of success for large corporates. But in the first half of the 21st, today’s business titans are doing things a little differently. As the demand for flexible-office space (flexspace) has grown across the world, some of the most famous names in tech and consulting have become part of that trend with long-term agreements for coworking premises replacing the traditional tower.

Chief among these is internet giant Google, which has recently leased around 24,000sq ft across two floors at IWG’s SPACES location in Royal Bank Plaza in the heart of Toronto’s financial district. A multiyear deal, it’s further evidence that flexspace can provide large office space for rent alongside nimbler offerings for smaller businesses and startups. A growing financial-services sector and a shortage of space has resulted in a competitive real-estate environment in downtown Toronto, making flexspace an attractive option in a volatile market.

It’s not just big tech that has discovered the benefits of flexible working in Canada. In Vancouver, the professional-services firm Deloitte is taking the entire SPACES property at 919 Granville Street downtown. “There is a revolution happening in the way people work, and we are supporting enterprises like Deloitte to achieve their new workspace vision,” said CEO of IWG Canada and Latin America Wayne Berger.

Part of a 1927 landmark building, Deloitte’s occupancy of the 70,000sq ft space is likely to bring a significant boost to the Granville Entertainment District and signal a change in the way big companies as well as small do business. “Today’s news that Deloitte will become our sole tenant in SPACES Granville is further proof that some of the world’s leading companies are redefining the world of work at a growing rate,” he stated.

As the ways we work and organise our lives are becoming increasingly flexible, it makes sense for the companies we work for to follow that trend. And when you consider the benefits that flexspace can bring – no cleaning or maintenance fees, no long-term contracts and no entry on the balance sheet – it’s a trend that’s surely set to grow. “We are proud to collaborate with Deloitte as they continue to lead in reimagining the workplace with their national strategy to build unique destinations that foster innovation,” Berger added.


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