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Google, Meta, and Other Tech Giants Abandon Office Space in London and Europe

As a result of the recession, some of the top technological companies in the world are closing down European headquarters and bases.

It has been rumored that not just the “big three” of Microsoft, Amazon, and Meta, but also Google’s parent firm Alphabet and Salesforce, supplier of CRM software and collaboration platform Slack, are planning to vacate their rented office space in London and Dublin.

Multiple initiatives to reduce expenses in light of the current economic downturn have prompted many businesses to think about consolidating their IT, HR, and security systems.

Hybrid jobs during the downturn

There are still some holdouts in the IT business despite the widespread adoption of hybrid working policies, which is driving the mass departure.

According to the FT, Snap, the company behind Snapchat, is considering reopening and perhaps expanding its San Francisco headquarters after it was shut down in October2022. Employees have reportedly been instructed to return to work there on Thursdays.

Under Elon Musk’s leadership, Twitter has pushed for workers to return to the office, and the company’s pursuit of its widely criticised “hardcore” work culture has gotten it in trouble with local zoning regulators when it installed beds in a commercial building (opens in new tab).

Bytedance, the company that owns TikTok, is requiring its employees to commute two or three days a week, and is reportedly on the verge of finalising a deal to become the sole occupier of Verdant, a brand-new building in London that is conveniently located near its Farringdon headquarters, as reported by three anonymous sources.

Although the company still plans to grow in Europe, Google plans to close at least one of its London offices when its lease expires next year. This location is located in Victoria. According to the Financial Times, the corporation plans to relocate the majority of its UK-based employees to a new, £1 billion office building in King’s Cross.

However, Google is considering subletting much of its remaining leased real estate in England’s capital because of the strange trend of one in ten workers opting to work from home permanently. An official Google statement was not provided.

While comparable attempts have already begun in the United States for its Fremont, California premises, reports have surfaced that Meta is also attempting to sublease a 310,000-square-foot facility in Fitzrovia in Central London before ever moving in.

It has canceled leases for two of three offices in Manhattan, New York, and is subletting a facility in Austin, Texas.

The Financial Times (FT) reports that Salesforce has announced intentions to publicly rent part of a floor in its London tower headquarters, taking a similar leap.

No one benefits from these changes; either tech workers are coaxed back into the office (even though there is no correlation between working from home and decreased productivity when provided with the proper tools) or small business owners run the risk of having their offices taken over by large corporations.