Meta pays ‘record’ £149 million to escape London office lease


Facebook’s owner Meta has paid £149 million to break its lease on an office building near Regent’s Park in the latest consolidation of space occupied by major tech firms in the era of hybrid working.

Landlord British Land disclosed the payment in a trading update today. It said Meta had surrendered the lease at 1 Triton Square, one of two buildings it leases at the Regent’s Place development.

British Land admitted that the surrender will dilute earnings in the six months to March as it seeks a new occupier for the eight storey building.

The company said while the handback “will result in a EPS dilution, post interest savings, of c.0.6p for the six months to March FY24 we are comfortable with current market expectations for FY24 due to better collection of historic COVID arrears than anticipated.”

It is believed to be one of the biggest deals of its kinds in the London commercial property market history. Meta has another 18 years on the lease and paid British Land the equivalent of around seven years of rent, analysts at BNP Paribas Exane.

The tech firm, which also owns Instagram, let the space from 2021 following a refurbishment but never moved into the building.

Meta has three other London sites including a neighbouring building in Regent’s Place, near Warren Street.

British Land chief executive Simon Carter, said: Meta’s surrender of our building at 1 Triton Square also enables us to accelerate our plans to reposition Regent’s Place as London’s premier Innovation and Life Sciences campus.”

The tech sector has been hit harder than most by the hybrid working revolution with huge swathes of its workforce able and preferring to work from home.”