UK Life Sciences Occupiers Guide to Laboratory Space

Produced in collaboration with JLL, this conclusive guide covers various types of lab space, the leasing process and what you can expect when first looking for space or taking new space for your business.

Finding the right space for your company can be difficult to plan against the forecasted growth of your business.

In parts of the UK there is a significant lack of purpose-built labs available. This imbalance is being addressed but it is causing mounting pressures on companies who need to act early to secure quality workspace that suits their needs.

Business continuity is important, especially for companies in the R&D stages of growth, so knowing what the process of leasing commercial lab space is and preparing yourself by having the best team around you is imperative.

Brokers, such as JLL, will be well-versed in the commercial lab market. They will have insights into the best available stock both on and off the market. They will have clarity on what pipeline space is coming to the market in the future so they can help you plan your locational strategy ahead of its implementation. Most importantly, brokers can ensure you are getting the best deal for your financial, operational and geographical requirements.

The process for a lab acquisition will vary depending on the amount of space required and the timescales to delivery. There are many important factors to consider when choosing a new space to expand or move into.

Critical Location Considerations

  • Size and make up of existing company base: Being part of an ecosystem that drives innovation. This will allow you to synergise with neighbouring companies, sharing ideas and best practices
  • Access to finance: Ability to engage with and partner with VC or other equity sources who are either located in the same building, or close by
  • Ability to attract and retain talent: Strong provision of amenities, public realm, placemaking and sustainability is important to attracting and retaining talent
  • Access to intellectual property: Proximity to: academia, corporate anchors, incubators to knowledge/IP share is vital
  • Proximity to SMEs: Co-location to incubator facilities or accelerator programmes. This offers the ability to collocate with the best in the industry and in your specific field of work
  • Specialist infrastructure: Identifying space that is fit for purpose, ability to flex your space over time based on changing R&D focus is also important

One of the more difficult elements of finding appropriate lab space for your company is knowing that the building will meet your requirements from a design and specification perspective.

Read the guide to learn what technical specifications to look out for, sustainability and ESG considerations plus case studies! 

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