HOLDEN is shopping around for someone to share empty office space at its Port Melbourne headquarters as the car maker starts to wind down ahead of its 2017 manufacturing exit.
Almost a year to the day Holden announced it was quitting, an expression of interest to rent part of the car maker's Salmon Street-based headquarters was listed on the website of commercial real estate specialist Mirvac, offering 7000 square metres – about half the area of a footy ground – of space split across three levels.
As part of its end to six decades of local manufacturing, Holden is shedding up to 2900 jobs – 1300 of them Victorian – across its Elizabeth, South Australia car-making plant, its $400 million Port Melbourne engine-casting facility, and its Salmon Street office.
It is believed Holden is seeking expressions of interest in sub-leasing areas of its office – purpose-built for the car maker in 2005 as part of a $2 billion, five-year investment plan and adjoining its V6 engine-casting plant and an idled four-cylinder one – as it reduces its white-collar headcount.
The advertisement on the Mirvac website notes that the office is only three kilometres from the heart of Melbourne, and includes access to a multi-storey car park.
As well as Holden marketing and sales staff who will survive beyond 2017, tenants will rub shoulders with foreign and local talent tied to General Motors’ global design office – the only part of manufacturing aside from the Lang Lang proving ground in Victoria’s south-east to survive the car-making cull.
Wheels contacted Mirvac to ask about the terms of the Salmon Street lease, but the company did not return our call.
Holden media spokesman George Svigos told Wheels the Australian arm of GM would keep its head office at the site beyond the end of local manufacturing.
“On behalf of Holden, [real estate services group] CBRE is exploring opportunities for any tenants to locate with Holden at 191-197 Salmon Street,” he said.
“Holden will remain headquartered at 191-197 Salmon Street.”
Holden is expected to sell off land that houses its Elizabeth facility and its Melbourne-based V6 engine plant once potentially costly environmental clean-ups at both sites are completed.
Meanwhile, Toyota announced late last week it would consolidate its sales and marketing operations in Melbourne once it becomes a full-line importer in late 2017, shuttering its Sydney-based operations. The Sydney closure affects about 350 workers.