Monday 3 February 2020 12:28 pm

Amazon ‘launches search’ for new London office space

Amazon is said to be on the hunt for new office space in London as the e-commerce giant doubles down on its commitment to the capital after Brexit.

The tech firm has called in advisers at Cushman & Wakefield to find a building with roughly 200,000 square feet (sq ft) of office space, the Times reported.

Amazon opened its 600,000 sq ft London headquarters at Principal Place on the border of the City and Shoreditch in 2017. The 15-storey building houses roughly 5,000 employees.

The firm also has an office in Holborn Viaduct, as well as development centres in London, Cambridge and Edinburgh.

The office search marks Amazon’s commitment to the UK despite continued uncertainty about the country’s immigration policy after Brexit.

The tech giant will also be subject to the government’s upcoming digital services tax, which will charge a two per cent levy on the UK revenue of internet firms.

However, Amazon’s UK country manager Douglas Gurr last month insisted the mooted tax would not impact its expansion plans, stating instead that the additional costs would likely be passed on to small businesses using its platform.

It comes amid a wider crackdown on tech giants amid growing calls for the multinational companies to pay their fair share of tax. France has already introduced a similar levy, while the OECD is seeking to establish cross-border proposals.

The plans had little impact on Amazon’s fourth-quarter figures last week, however, as a surge in Prime memberships helped deliver profit ahead of expectations.

Shares in the firm jumped more than 13 per cent following the announcement, pushing its market valuation back above the feted $1 trillion mark.

Amazon’s expansion in London mirrors Facebook’s plans for huge new headquarters at King’s Cross, while Apple is building a new base at Battersea Power Station.

Amazon declined to comment on the office search. Cushman & Wakefield has been contacted for comment.