MUMBAI: Bank of America has leased nearly 4 lakh sq ft of office space from the Savvy Group in Gujarat International Finance Tec-City (Gift-City), in one of the largest commercial real estate transactions during the pandemic period, said two people with direct knowledge of the development.

The American multinational investment bank and financial services company had booked 1 lakh sq ft earlier, but then decided to extend it by an additional 3 lakh sq ft now. The space is spread over 14 floors of a 24-storey building that counts International Financial Services Centres Authority and Sequel Logistics as other key tenants.

BA Continuum India, Bank of America’s India subsidiary, has leased the space for 15 years, with the agreement involving rental reset clause after every three years.

“The transaction has been approved by the SEZ authority and was inked last week. The bank had earlier finalised around 1 lakh sq ft space in this building and has now concluded with a total nearly 4 lakh sq ft. This is the fastest and biggest expansion decision by the bank during the pandemic,” said one of the people mentioned above.

The bank’s Global Business Services Center had leased some space in the building prior to the outbreak of pandemic.

The total office space is expected to accommodate more than 3,000 employees serving its global subsidiaries.

Most of these employees will be hired afresh.

Nearly 1,200 of BA Continuum India’s employees were earlier expected to be operating from this building.

ET’s email query to Bank of America remained unanswered until the time of going to press on Sunday.

Savvy Group’s Chairman & Managing Director Jaxay Shah declined to comment for the story.

Started in 2004, BA Continuum India currently operates out of four Indian cities — Mumbai, Hyderabad, Chennai and Gurgaon — with over 20,000 employees.

Located between Ahmedabad and Gandhinagar, Gift City is the first operational International Financial Services Centre (IFSC) in India.

IFSCs are intended to provide companies with easier access to global financial markets, and to complement and promote development of financial markets in the country.

According to reports, 18 IT and IT enabled services companies have applied for setting up units at the Gift City’s multi-services SEZ.

The entities setting up operations in the Gift City are eligible for a tax holiday for 10 consecutive years, besides no goods & services tax, stamp duty & registration charges. Additional benefits from the Gujarat government including a capital investment subsidy up to 25% and rental subsidy of Rs 3-8 per sq ft a month are also available.



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