Matthew Neville

Glasgow digital and tech hub development secures £36.5m loan

OakNorth Bank, the UK bank for entrepreneurs, has provided a £35.6m loan to the science and tech sector’s leading property provider, Bruntwood SciTech.

Established in 2018 in a joint venture between leading regional property company Bruntwood and Legal & General, Bruntwood SciTech is dedicated to driving the growth of the UK’s science and technology sector.

Headquartered in central Manchester, the firm is now home to a network of over 500 “disruptive and innovative” companies and has 2.4m sq ft of assets under management, with a further 5m sq ft in its development pipeline.

The capital from OakNorth Bank will be used to support the acquisition and redevelopment of Glasgow’s Met Tower, a 14-storey office building in the heart of the city centre, that’s set to become its new tech and digital hub.

The site will be transformed into a hub where university spinouts, startups, scaleups and large tech businesses can co-locate together and benefit from being in an “innovative, collaborative tech cluster”.

Offering 113,000 sq ft of coworking, serviced and leased office space, the site will include a shared breakout space on the ground floor, as well as a rooftop lounge to be used by its future community.

The facility will also be used to acquire the three-storey podium building, located adjacent to the Met Tower and situated a short walk from Glasgow’s central station and within immediate proximity to The University of Strathclyde, Glasgow Caledonian University and the City of Glasgow College.

Kate Lawlor, CEO, Bruntwood SciTech, commented on the transaction: “Glasgow has one of Europe’s most exciting, diverse tech and digital clusters with exceptional higher education institutions and clinical assets.

“The city’s science and tech sector is rapidly growing, with the industry now making up 28 per cent of all jobs in the city, making the Met Tower perfectly placed to help create a hub in which these businesses can scale, co-innovate and thrive.

“Our investment in Glasgow is for the long term, and as we’ve demonstrated in our other cities, we are committed to becoming embedded and driving forwards the growth of the knowledge economy and economic impact of the sector both in Glasgow and other parts of Scotland.”

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