Episode 2 of The Agenda sees barrister and EG columnist, Jonathan Seitler QC of Wilberforce Chambers, go head to head with Jacqui Joyce of The Property Mediators to discuss the merits of using mediation instead of litigation to resolve property disputes. In a debate that ranges from confidentiality and precedent setting to cost and efficiency, no stone is left unturned in exploring where the merits of each mechanism lie.

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Cambridge-based Howard Group is considering speculatively building 60,000 sq ft of offices in response to the growing demand from life sciences companies for new accommodation at relatively short notice.

The development company’s plans will be subject to approval for an existing application for a 200,000 sq ft business park in Sawston in south Cambridgeshire.

The first phase of the Sawston scheme will provide a 72,000 sq ft of mixed use space, including co-working offices.

William Jewson, development director, said: “We are seriously considering building speculatively as the sort of occupiers our buildings appeal to don’t like to wait 18 months for a new building. They don’t plan that far ahead. What they like to see is a building coming out of the ground so they know it’s going to be completed by the time they are ready. And often they like to engage with the developer as it is being built, then refine it to their requirements.”

 

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Time Out Market chief executive Didier Souillat tells EG that the business is on track to meet its target of opening five market in five years and how the model could become the future anchore for retail developments worldwide. 

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Michael Harrison, co-founder of Gravity trampoline parks, speaks to EG about his beackground growing up on a travelling fun-fair and how his childhood roots in leisure have given him the skills to build a £30m leisure buisiness in less than three years.

 

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Nicole Bremner director of East Eight Group, explains what is holding smaller builders back. 

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The ongoing ambition to position Cambridge as the centre of the UK’s life sciences industry is significantly unmatched by the pipeline of suitable space for businesses to move into.

Currently there is just 18 months’ worth of laboratory accommodation in the city's pipeline, according to Rob Sadler, head of Cambridge office for Savills.

 

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The owner of one of Rome’s oldest pasta restaurants has launched two new restaurant concepts called Fettuccine Alfredo and is looking to expand in London and Europe.

 

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MODA's director of developments Lee Savage explains the developer's push into the South East. 

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In front of an illustrious, albeit all male (we know, we asked) panel of judges at the New Diorama Theatre in London last night, six proptech start-ups pitched their businesses for the chance to claim as much as £150,000 of investment from VC investor Pi Labs.

The inaugural EG Techtalk Academy, in partnership with Pi Labs, CBRE and KPMG, saw nervous and excited entrepreneurs battle against a five-minute stopwatch and the threat of being hooted off stage before enduring 10 minutes of frank and tough questioning from a panel that comprised Dominic Wilson, managing director of Pi Labs, Nick Leslau, chairman of Prestbury, Chris Grigg, chief executive of British Land, Dave Eisenberg, senior vice president of digital enablement and technology at CBRE, Mike Sherwood, former MD of Europe at Goldman Sachs and Kevin Brown, founding partner of REV.

Six pitched but only one could be crowned the winner and take home the EG TechTalk Academy trophy, plus that investment with Pi Labs.

For the judges, the winner was clear. It was a business that appealed to the financial brains on the  panel as well as those that understood the true bricks and mortar of the real estate business.

Demand Logic, led by Sonny Masero, is a “fitbit for buildings” a piece of tech that feeds into existing building management systems and rapidly reads that data to provide a fitness regime for the building.

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A lack of transport infrastructure is a major constraint to housing development in Cambridge where the shortage is regarded as “acute”, and unless addressed, truly affordable accommodation will be but a pipe dream for the city’s young adults.

 This was one of the key points made at EG's Cambridge Question Time on 15 November. Listen to the full debate here.

Panellists were:

 

Rob Sadler, Head of Cambridge Office, Savills

Martin Curtis, Associate Director, Curtin & Co

Derek Carr, Partner, PEM

Michaela Henson, Partner – Cambridge, Howes Percival LLP

William Jewson, Director, Property Development, Howard Group

John Miu, Chief Operating Officer, ABP

Chaired by: David Hatcher, News & Finance Editor, EG

 

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