HCMC workplace evolution: what’s next?

June 12, 2017 / By  

In 2017, two long-awaited international Grade A office buildings, Deutsche Haus and Saigon Centre Phase II, are expected to be completed.

Deutsche Haus is the most energy-efficient green premium office building in Vietnam with LEED Platinum Certificate. Saigon Centre Phase II features the latest green technology and offers 44,000 sm column-free space with inter-floor connectivity, raised flooring.

These are the first office buildings to be completed since 2013 and are needed for the expansion of HCMC’s economy, allow for greater space efficiency and offer modern building management systems for tenants.

Coworking is growing in Vietnam.  The growing community of young entrepreneurs in Vietnam in the last few years has brought with it the need for a new working place concept – a shared working space – where entrepreneurs can access a network of other motivated and interesting entrepreneurs.

The first co-working space introduced to the market, Start and WorkStation, offers small-scale co-working space with more focus on creative communities. The requirement for co-working space in the city officially started booming in late 2016, as Vietnam’s start-up ecosystem flourished on the back of a strong economy.

The co-working space aims to develop a diversified community to nourish interaction and build sustainable development. Toong, a local co-working chain, is an excellent example of this type of co-working space.

These changes show that the HCMC office market has come a long way.

The Ho Chi Minh City office market started in 1993 with the introduction of the first standalone office building in District 1. That small Grade B quality equivalent building brought to the market a new level of office space quality and, with it, an inevitable higher demand for the quality of working space. Prior to that, most companies mainly occupied individual street houses for their offices, with no professional security and maintenance services provided.

Since 2007, the city witnessed a wave of office building construction driven by economic indicators and a supply shortage. The quality of offices has not improved much since then, until the Kumho Asiana Plaza building entered the market in 2009, which was the first to meet all the requirements for a Grade A office building.

The Centre Point office building entered the market the same year, and was the first office building to incorporate the “green” factor into its design. The presence of Kumho Asiana Plaza and Centre Point set the benchmark for high quality office space in Ho Chi Minh City. In spite of the market downturn in 2008-2012 following the global financial crisis, space in both buildings was quickly snapped up by international companies or even local companies that had waited a long time for this type of property.

As the office market entered a new cycle four years later, a new wave of office supply with advanced design and quality entered the market. The city welcomed the first LEED Gold Certificate office building, President Place. The building is home to many international high-tech companies that have made sustainable operations a priority.

Figure 1: HCMC workplace evolution
Figure 1 - 12Jun2017-v2
Source: JLL Research

Technology has quickly changed the way people, live, work, play and learn, especially for millennials. There will be an urgent demand for new models, which can create a place for youths to not only work, play and drive sustainable development. Ho Chi Minh City is likely to welcome more innovative developments to meet this growing demand.

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