The letter, signed by 32 operators including Huckletree, Office Space in Town, TechSpace and Uncommon, asked the chancellor for the 12-month business rates relief offered to high street companies to be extended to include flexible workspace businesses.
“Put simply,” the letter read, “these companies have been directly impacted by the pandemic much like hospitality businesses. Hundreds of independent co-working spaces will go bust unless the government steps up.”
The letter continued: “The very flexibility that had facilitated the growth of entrepreneurship (short, flexible contracts and low rents) are now causing huge problems for the spaces as companies are pulling back. Events space is often a secondary revenue stream that has now been entirely cut off as well.”
The letter also asked for public sector landlords to be asked to “forgo, not just delay, some significant proportion of their rental and service charges, either directly or through government financial intervention”.
“This intervention would disproportionally favour smaller, local providers across the UK,” it continued.
The letter followed warnings from operators last month that flexible workspace operators faced “similar battles’ to those of retailers and that they would need support through the pandemic.
Last week, Property Week reported serviced operators had seen transactions plummet around 90% since the beginning of the outbreak.