Eventbrite to depart Cork's South Mall due to Covid-19 impact 

Global ticketing and event firm to downsize but remain committed to Cork
Eventbrite to depart Cork's South Mall due to Covid-19 impact 
97 South Mall, one of Cork City's most iconic buildings, is back on the market for lease. 

One of Cork city’s most iconic buildings is up for lease on foot of a decision by its existing tenants to quit the premises as part of a global scale down of its Covid-19-hit business.

97 South Mall, at the junction of South Mall and Parnell Place, has been European hub for Eventbrite, an international ticketing and event technology platform, since June 2018, but cancellations across the globe of live events have severely impacted its operations.

In April, the San Francisco-headquartered company announced it was cutting its global workforce by 45%. Head of European Communications Sebastian Boppert said they had started out with around 35 staff (in a different location in Cork, 89/90 South Mall) ‘and significantly grew the team from there to a point where we needed a larger home and moved into 97 South Mall’.

However: “Since the local team was affected by the most recent impact of Covid on our company, we no longer need an office this size and are currently looking for a new workspace,” he said. He declined to put a figure on the number of employees impacted.

Mr Boppert said the company remains committed to Cork.

“The building we are in is very impressive and very nice, but for our current business, it is too large,” he said.

The South Mall premises, described as “one of the most magnificent buildings in Cork” by Buildings of Ireland, the state inventory of our architectural heritage, is part of the JCD (John Cleary Developments) group property portfolio.

A spokesperson for the group told the Irish Examiner that they are “facilitating the tenant in sub-leasing the space while working with them to accommodate their reduced space requirements”.

JCD purchased the building in late 2017 for an undisclosed sum — reputed to be €1.6m-€1.7m — and it underwent extensive refurbishment, including a new mezzanine floor, open plan design, soundproofing, access-controlled lift, additional toilet blocks, and extensive cabling and technology investment.

It had previously been in the ownership of media company Thomas Crosbie Holdings (TCH), former owners of the Irish Examiner, who bought it from the AIB for a multimillion-euro sum in the early 2000s.

TCH invested significantly in the building, overseen by ORSA/Reddy architects, and during their occupation, the William G Murray-designed building hosted visits from a diverse group that included the likes of Henry Kissinger, former British PM John Major, Jeffrey Archer, John Cleese, and Bob Geldof.

Property advisors CBRE are now seeking new tenants for this historic building.

Brian Edwards, managing director, CBRE Cork said 97 South Mall represents “truly a rare opportunity for an occupier to acquire a statement headquarter office building in a prime city-centre location”.

“The property was extensively refurbished to an excellent standard in 2018 providing first-class modern office accommodation.” he said, adding that the premises is available “on flexible lease terms by way of assignment or by sub-lease with the passing rent equating to just €22.50 psf (per square foot) which is significantly below prime office rents being achieved for newly built offices”.

The entire building is held under a 10-year lease from 4 May 2018 at a passing rent of €250,875 per annum (€22.50 psf). The annual service charge is €1.00 psf.

The property extends to approximately 1,035.9sq m (11,150sq ft). Mr Edwards said there is potential for sub-division.

The ground floor comprises reception, open plan office area (former banking hall), training and meeting rooms, canteen with break-out area and restrooms.

A lift and stairs serve the upper floors and the first floor/mezzanine level comprises two open-plan terrace office areas which overlook the ground floor level, two large multi-occupancy offices, three meeting rooms, tea station, storage rooms and restrooms. The second floor includes two large multi-occupancy offices, three meeting rooms, communications room, storage room, and restrooms with shower.

The property, in the heart of Cork city’s central business district, is conveniently located adjacent to hotels, restaurants, cafes, gyms, and a wide array of retail services. The city’s central bus station is located close-by and Kent train station is a short walk away. Other near neighbours include KPMG and UCC Business School, as well as the Imperial Hotel and the Maldron Hotel.

No 97 dates to 1865 and was designed for the Provincial Bank of Ireland by architect WG Murray, who also designed the Royal College of Physicians on Dublin’s Kildare St.

It is a Renaissance-revival, Palazzo style building with a very attractive limestone external façade decorated with columns and elaborate carvings.

Buildings of Ireland says: “Its prominent site at the end of the South Mall, opposite the Cork Savings Bank, designed by Thomas & Kearns Deane (1839) and with a clear view of the City Hall, makes this one of Cork’s most important classical setpieces.”

For further information contact Brian Edwards at +353 21 4917255 or email brian.s.edwards@cbre.com

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