3PLs took lion’s share of warehouse space in 2022

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Third party logistics providers secured more than 40% of the available warehouse space leased last year according to the latest figures from Colliers.

The take-up amounted to 16.5 million ft² representing 43% of all logistics space leased in the last 12 months overtaking take-up levels from online retailers who had secured the most warehouse space in the previous two years (33% in 2020 – 16m ft² and 45% in 2021 – 23.8m ft²). Online retailers reduced their take-up levels to just 11% in 2022 representing a mere 4.2m ft².

Retailers and wholesalers were the second most acquisitive occupier group during the last 12 months taking up 19% of space, followed by 16% being taken by manufacturing firms.

Overall occupier demand slowed down in 2022. Take-up for large distribution warehouses of 100,000+ ft² reached 38m ft² for 2022, down 28.5% from the record breaking 53m ft² witnessed in 2021. However, when examining the average of the five years’ take-up prior to the pandemic (2015-2019), take up in 2022 was 24% higher.

Len Rosso, head of Industrial & Logistics at Colliers said: “The pandemic-fuelled demand from occupiers was always going to be unsustainable and last year was the first ‘normal’ year of trading so it’s hardly surprising that take-up reduced.

“However, there was plenty of uncertainty during the year between the Ukraine/Russia war and the many changes of the UK government that could have derailed occupier appetite further, but there has been resilience in the market and demand has returned to the occupier mix we saw prior to COVID-19, with logistics providers taking up the most space.”

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