The findings came as part of the 2018 Global Cities report. And despite the world looking to San Francisco as an innovation powerhouse, its reputation wasn’t enough to have it lead the most expensive tech districts in the world.
Instead, that title goes to Shoreditch in London. The location was found atop the most expensive tech districts rundown thanks to a rental price tag of $90.75 per square foot.
By comparison, Whitefield in Bengaluru, India was bottom of the most expensive tech districts, with a rate of $9.65 per square foot. Madrid’s Julian Camarillo area is also a great deal cheaper than Shoreditch at $13.65.
Shoreditch has seen off competition of competition from not just prime hotspot San Francisco, but also hotspots including Dublin, Paris and New York, which have respective rents of $77, $76.30 and $74, while the Big Apple’s Brooklyn falls significantly to $56.05.
Dublin is a desirable tech area for large tech firms and even that wasn’t enough to bring the city closer to Shoreditch prices.
Speaking with Real Business, Instagram head of SMEs, Jen Ronan, said of the Irish location: “I’m based in Dublin at Grand Canal Dock – the joke about it is they call it Silicon Dock because we’re all surrounded by big tech companies there – Google, Twitter and LinkedIn are all in that neck of the woods.”
Knight Frank found that “intense demand” for office space in Shoreditch is what resulted in rents being higher than anywhere else.
Shoreditch aside, the real estate firm highlighted that European cities have far more affordable spaces than other locations. Amsterdam’s tech district is in the city centre and has a fee of just $34.45 attached.
James Nicholson a Partner, Knight Frank Tech said: “Whilst Shoreditch is just one submarket favoured by tech and creative firms, this submarket is the poster child for the growth of London’s tech driven evolution – the high rents reflect how greatly tech and creative firms value having an office in the capital.
“Since 2011, the technology, media and telecoms or TMT sector overtook finance as the largest source of office demand in London, and has held that leading position ever since. As the tech ecosystem in London matures, companies have demonstrated a willingness to pay more, to create the best possible workplace for staff.
“Creating great ‘user experience’ is paramount for those looking to attract and retain the best talent. This direct association between workplace and talent has forced businesses to prioritise working environment over and above a general desire to keeping costs low.”
Find the full ranking of the most expensive tech districts in the world below.
Prime Rent (US$ per sq ft)
CBD : Rama 1, Sathorn, Sukhumvit Soi 21
1st, 2nd and 9th Districts (Cité Financière )
NoMa (North of Massachusetts Avenue)
South Lake Union
Dubai Media City
King & Spadina
Fulton Market District
Zhangjiang Hi-Tech Park
Gurgaon (Cyber City)
Guro-gu (Guro Digitial Complex) & Geumcheon-gu (Gasan Digital Complex)
Julian Camarillo area
Cyberjaya Office Market
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