Biggest engineering hub outside the US
In a move signalling its commitment to Britain amid the Brexit uncertainty, tech giant Facebook has opened a new London office which will be its biggest engineering hub outside the US.
Located in Rathbone Place, Facebook’s new office will be home to 800 new “high tech” employees. Designed by architect Frank Gehry, the 247,000 sq ft office includes seven floors and a new public square just off Oxford Street.
Media reports also suggest that the new office will house Facebook’s first in-house start-up incubator to help kick-start British digital businesses.
Chancellor Philip Hammond has hailed the location as “a sign of confidence in our country that innovative companies like Facebook invest here, and it’s terrific news that they will be hiring 800 more highly skilled workers next year”.
Mayor of London Sadiq Khan added: “The launch of the company’s incubator is set to play a crucial role in attracting vital talent to London, and will help to pave the way for the next generation of successful startups.”
According to Nicola Mendelsohn, Facebook’s Europe, Middle East and Asia vice-president: “…Today’s announcements show that Facebook is more committed than ever to the UK and in supporting the growth of the country’s innovative start-ups.”
The UK’s flourishing entrepreneurial ecosystem and international reputation for engineering excellence makes it one of the best places in the world to build a tech company. And we’ve built our company here – this country has been a huge part of Facebook’s story over the past decade, and I look forward to continuing our work to achieve our mission of bringing the world closer together,” Mendelsohn added.
The company had opened its first office in London 10 years ago and expects its British workforce to reach 2,300 by the end of next year.