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Facebook to double its amount of office space in London

London

FACEBOOK Inc will double the amount of space it occupies in London as technology firms continue to expand in the UK.

The new office buildings in the city's King's Cross district will have room for more than 6,000 people, compared with a target of 2,300 workers by the end of this year. Facebook's statement on Monday did not say how many jobs will be created as part of part of the expansion.

Workplace, Facebook's enterprise collaboration tool, is wholly built and run out of London, and the UK capital is also home to the engineering team responsible for the security of the social network's community. Its London teams also work on virtual reality products.

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"The UK is one of the best places in the world to be a technology company and we're investing here for the long term," Steve Hatch, Facebook's managing director for Northern Europe, said in a statement on Monday. Bloomberg News reported in November that the firm was in talks to lease a new office at King's Cross, close to the planned headquarters of Google. The social media company, which also leases office space near Oxford Street, will occupy almost 600,000 square feet of new office space, the equivalent of more than nine soccer fields.

US technology giants including Apple Inc, Amazon.com and Google parent Alphabet Inc have been expanding in London, lured by a concentration of highly skilled workers. That demand has helped keep office rents and values in the UK capital near record highs despite the Brexit vote and cost-cutting in the financial services industry.

The amount of office space leased by technology, media and telecom firms in central London last year was 25 per cent higher than the long-term average, according to broker Knight Frank. BLOOMBERG