In a statement British Airways said, it is weighing options which includes a sale of its headquarters building, since the coronavirus-induced pandemic has created a switch to working from home, as a result of which British Airways feels it may no longer need so much office space.
The potential sale of British Airways’ building, could reduce the airline’s cash burn to some extent. The building was completed in 1998 at a cost of 200 million pounds ($279 million).
Over the last year, the shift to working from home has prompted some of Britain’s largest companies to make changes to their office footprints; banking giant Lloyds said it would cut office space by 20% within three years, HSBC is also aiming to reduce its office footprint by 40%.
In a statement British Airways said, many employees enjoyed working from home and its future policy would likely be a flexible mix of home and office working.
“We’ve re-structured our business to emerge from the crisis and are considering whether we still have the need for such a large headquarters building,” said BA’s spokesman in a statement.
As one of the means to mitigate the effects of the pandemic, British Airways has spent the most of last year to cut costs, including trimming more than 10,000 employees, leaving it with an employ strength of around 30,000, most of whom don’t work in the office but are pilots, cabin crew, engineers or airport staff.
British Airways has also sought to raise cash by selling famous works of art that were hung in its executive lounges.
Waterside’s long-term future was already hanging in the balance as it would need to be demolished if the proposed expansion of Heathrow goes ahead.