Milton Park Innovation Centre, Oxfordshire - Ashdown Phillips & Partners
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Milton Park Innovation Centre, Oxfordshire

We place a lot of emphasis on being happy, and we believe that happiness comes, in part, from being connected to others. We are social creatures, who thrive when we are part of a community.

This understanding has helped us finesse the service on offer at the Innovation Centre, which is at the heart of Milton Park; one of the largest privately-owned business parks in Europe.

The Innovation Centre is home to almost 80 businesses of all shapes and sizes who benefit from fully serviced spaces, designed to support them with their operational needs so they can focus on running their businesses. But the Innovation Centre is more than a practical place; the team is nurturing, with occupiers enjoying being looked after; it is connecting, where self-employed start-ups work side-by-side with expanding young businesses; and it is flexible, so businesses can scale up and down as they need. It is a positive and productive community of people who want to thrive. It feels like a happy place.

We inherited this when we took over as managing agents, and we also inherited a fantastic team who are dedicated, enthusiastic and experienced. They too believe in connectedness and work hard to make sure our occupiers receive a consistent, hotel-standard service every day.

Not everything we inherited was as great, however. Delivering high quality serviced offices on flexible terms is demanding of the treasury function; it is an intensive, fast-paced environment which requires a focused team of experts who are able to set systems in place that may be complex in the background but appear simple and seamless to occupiers.

MEPC had heard about our love of complex mandates and our bespoke and flexible solutions. We leapt straight in, spending the first months of our appointment reconciling deposits, chasing arrears, building structures for charge raising and putting the right accounting team in place to support the new systems.

This work has paid off – since our appointment, almost 70% of occupiers have reported an improvement in the service provided, with no one at all suggesting they were better off before. It has paid off in other ways too – we enjoyed 100% occupancy throughout 2018 and were shortlisted for Business Space of the Year 2018, at the Vale4Business Awards.

Milton Park Innovation Centre is just the kind of property we love; we have an engaged and committed client, a great on and off-site team who relish a challenge, and a dynamic portfolio of occupiers who value great service. MEPC have recognised our ability and passion for what we do and are working closely with us on their plans to redevelop another building at Milton Park to provide a similar service.

It feels great to have found another community to connect with. Are we happy? You bet.