Google Purchases Plot in London for $1 Billion to Build New Headquarters
Tech giant Google Inc. has reportedly bought a 2.4-acre plot in the Kings Cross Central Development, London, for $1.6 billion. The firm is all set to build a million square feet U.K. headquarters on the large site.
Google's current U.K. offices are located in Victoria and Holborn, London, and are expected to shift by 2016. Once the building is completed, Google will be neighbors with a branch of The University of Arts London, The Saint Martin's College of Art and Design and BNP Paribas.
The Kings Cross Central is an empty plot spanning across an area of 67 acres. The plot will be developed by a partnership of two builders, the Argent Group and Kings Cross Central Limited. The place will include residential and commercial spaces as well, reports Business Insider.
Construction on Google's future headquarters will start later in 2013. The building is expected to have around seven to 11 stories, reports Reuters.
Conventionally, Google has been leasing offices all-around the world. However, recently the company has started buying properties with latest buys in Dublin, Paris and now London, reports Business Insider.
"This is a big investment by Google. We're committing further to the U.K. - where computing and the web were invented. It's good news for Google, for London and for the U.K.," Matt Brittin, vice president, Northern and Central Europe, Google, told The Hollywood Reporter.
Google's net earnings were estimated to be around $44.6 billion in 2011, out of which $21.2 billion were being held offshore. If these funds would attract a huge tax in the U.S. Experts opined that Google's property purchase was a move toward saving tax.
"If you're not going to send it back to the parent company to repurchase its shares, which is the normal route for a U.S. corporation sitting on a pile of cash, what else are you going to do with it?" Richard Murphy, accountant and tax campaigner told Reuters.
Google will be spending around $1.03 billion on the construction and development of its new headquarters, reports Biz Journals.