Towards the end of last year independent operator Portal Business Centres announced that it would be opening a new centre located in Bromborough on the Wirral.
For some 18 years Portal has been offering flexible office space in Warrington. The launch of a new business centre has marked an exciting time for the team at Portal; with nearly two decades of industry experience this is the first time that the company has ventured into an expansion.
Four months after the announcement of the new Bromborough offices I caught up with Sallie Maskrey for an update on how things are progressing.
Easy Offices: Is there an official launch date for the new serviced offices? What has been happening at the business centre so far?
Sallie: It has been a busy, exciting and rewarding four months. We have been busy organising and planning for the new centre and a refurbishment programme is well under way. A new assistant centre manager, Jo Wiggins, has joined the team. Jo is responsible for the day to day running of the centre and, being local, has fitted in quickly and is very popular with our clients in Bromborough.
We are pleased to announce an official launch date for Thursby House on Thursday 10th May 2012, where businesses in the centre and local area will be invited to visit, meet the team, network and see the new changes.
Easy Offices: How many clients have you signed and from what type of industries?
Sallie: We have signed a variety of new customers from all different industries and sizes; Alpha Homes, a housing association that provide quality homes for the elderly. Last Man Stands the widest reaching cricket league in the world and Henkan a global continuous improvement consultancy and training organisation majoring in lean healthcare and lean manufacturing.
Easy Offices: Are you seeing much interest from local businesses? With few competitors in the area do you think that you are filling a void in the demand for local space?
Sallie: We have had a great deal of interest from local businesses, Thursby House is based in a prime location on the edge of the Croft Retail & Business Parks just off the A41 but close to the M53, M56 and A55, which makes us ideal for businesses in the Wirral area. A large number of businesses in the area prefer a short commute with many cycling to work after the much publicised Invest in Wirral Cycle to Work Scheme.
Easy Offices: Lately there has been a lot of talk within the serviced office industry of a rise in demand for start-up offices. How do office space enquiries in Bromborough compare?
Sallie: We have experienced an increase in the number of enquires for 1 to 3 person offices and have dedicated a wing of the Bromborough centre to cater for this size of company. We also provide a hot desk and shared office facility. There is a definite increase in small businesses wanting premises; I think they like the flexibility and services that a business centre can give them.
Easy Offices: In your experience, what are the most important needs of a start up company and how do you cater for these at Bromborough?
Sallie: As I mentioned, I think they like the flexibility of a serviced office and the fact that they have not had to sign a long term contract, plus I think the important needs are the business support a serviced office can bring a start up company. They have great reception support giving their company a professional first impression to their clients and they are only paying for services when they need them for example an hour in a meeting room.And they are surrounded by businesses similar in size and it enables them to share their experience and pass advice back and forth.
Easy Offices: Are you planning to hold networking events at the new offices like at your Warrington business centre? If so, what do you feel this will bring to local businesses?
Sallie: Following our success at Warrington we are going to be holding our Fruit Cake Fridays in Bromborough too. Many of the businesses in Warrington really like the Fruit Cake Friday sessions, in particular the intelligence sharing, many have found the advice shared invaluable and I can imagine that local business on the Wirral will too.
We are also opening our meeting rooms to any local Networking Groups in the Wirral area. They are welcome to hold their events in Thursby House, free of charge. It’s a great way to meet them and the businesses that they connect with.
Our first network event will be our launch event on Thursday 10th May and we look forward to welcoming business colleagues old and new to share this Milestone with us.
You can view the New Bromborough on the Wirral Serviced Offices on our website. For more information about availability, pricing and how to arrange a viewing please call 020 3773 2893.
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