Surveillance Systems Captures One of 2021’s Largest Melbourne Office Deals

Posted on 07th September 2021

141 Capel 16

One of Melbourne’s biggest office leasing deals outside of the CBD for 2021 has seen surveillance systems developer AVT Australia expand in North Melbourne, following its acquisition by NYSE-listed CACI International.

Fitzroys’ Agency Associate Stephen Land negotiated the four-year lease at 141 Capel Street at a face rent of $701,040 plus GST per annum.

Refurbished ahead of the leasing campaign, the wholly self-contained, three-level 1,582sqm building consists of offices over level one and level two, and a ground floor car park with 25 single spaces.

It is only a 10-minute walk to Flagstaff train station and ample on-site street parking along Capel Street for customers and clients, and will be just a few minutes’ walk from the future Parkville train station.

AVT Australia was acquired last year by CACI International to deliver technology and capabilities in ISR (intelligence, surveillance & reconnaissance), security, and counter UAS (unmanned aircraft systems) solutions to its customers.

“As a result of its growth and acquisition, the company sought to expand their office footprint substantially. They already occupy an office warehouse of circa-500sqm within Capel Street that they will retain,” Land said.

Late in 2019, AVT Australia won a $5.2 million Defence Innovation Hub contract with the Federal Government to design and develop a system to improve the quality of images captured by drones.

Land said the a large number of tenants from a broad range of industries made enquiries, including biotech, pharmaceutical and medical research companies looking to have a presence within the city’s renowned biomedical precinct; various not-for-profit organisations who gravitate to these areas due to lower rental rates of comparable fringe suburbs and the CBD, as well as unions and other government bodies; and engineering and construction groups to be close to major infrastructure works.

“Often, larger tenants of 700sqm to 1,500sqm are looking at their moves up to six to nine months out, so we were dealing with delayed commencement dates which can be tricky with landlords that are not institutional or as familiar with the market. However, in this case we were able to secure an imminent rent and commencement date,” Land said.

“The building offered prospective tenants a chance to relocate from the CBD with the option of a whole self-contained building that have become more sought-after during COVID given the greater health and logistical securities.

“While we have been seeing this trend, the demand for the north-west fringe has lagged that of the east and south east, including locations like Richmond and Cremorne.”

Land said lifestyle, amenity and accessibility considerations are more sought-after than ever with flexible working arrangements in vogue.

The building is just moments from Queen Victoria Market and the CBD, with the property offering impressive views of the city.