Businesses wasting $1.5 trillion on office space rent costs, says Philips Lighting during World Green Building Week

Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
The Asia Pacific market could save up to $997bn if buildings were optimised (Source: Getty)

Businesses around the world could save a total of $1.5 trillion (£1.11 trillion) in reduced office costs by using space more efficiently, according to analysis by Philips Lighting.

Philips is calling for the renovation rate of offices in developed countries to double to three per cent a year. Refurbishing buildings to optimum standards would reduce energy costs and emissions, and help use space more efficiently by reducing the number of empty workspaces and meeting rooms.

“Renovating buildings to make them more energy efficient can have a huge beneficial impact on the environment, and when they are renovated properly to encompass smart technology, the additional financial impact for businesses can also be vast,” said Harry Verhaar, head of global public and government affairs at Philips Lighting.

According to the findings, the market with the most potential for saving is Asia Pacific. It is the largest market with over 65bn square feet of office space, but could save up to $977bn if buildings were optimised. The next largest market is Europe, which could save up to $243bn, followed by North America at $220bn.

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Philips Lighting says Deloitte was able to reduce the space required per employee by 50 per cent in The Edge building in Amsterdam compared to its previous building, while also improving employee well-being by using smart technology.

“This can significantly reduce bills for energy, water and air conditioning, and generate even greater financial benefits by improving the productivity of employees through enabling them to do things like find a meeting room faster or adapt the light and temperature conditions at their workstation.”

The report from Philips coincides with World Green Building Week, which promotes the goal of making all buildings “net zero” by 2050, meaning they use energy from renewable sources while producing net zero carbon emissions annually.

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