Broadway Malyan’s first overseas studio in Lisbon is celebrating its best ever year as it marks its 20th anniversary in Portugal.
The practice - which is headquartered in London and has 16 studios worldwide, employing more than 500 staff - saw turnover from its Lisbon studio pass 5 million euros for the first time in the last financial year.
The increased revenues reflect the studio’s growing stature as an international hub for the practice with more than three quarters of revenue generated from overseas projects – especially in the Middle East, Sub-Saharan Africa and Brazil.
However, 2015 also saw a significant recovery in the Portuguese market with revenues increasing from 3 per cent in 2014 to 30 per cent in 2015 of the overall total with this figure forecast to rise to 50 per cent next year.
The office is led by Margarida Caldeira, who has also recently been appointed as chair of Broadway Malyan’s EMEA Regional Board in recognition of her significant experience and Lisbon’s increased reach and influence across the region.
She said: “For our first 10 years in Lisbon the Portuguese market represented 100 per cent of our workload and we were fortunate enough to be involved in some high profile projects including major commissions at Lisbon International Airport and the city’s central railway station.
“The challenges that everybody started to face after 2008 are well documented and so rather than retreat from Portugal we made a conscious decision to look at the opportunities offered by external markets – both in emerging economies with strong Portuguese links but also more mature markets where we could export our extensive experience in sectors such as retail, workplace and hospitality design.”
As part of a strategy to embrace other Portuguese speaking markets, Broadway Malyan opened a studio in Brazil – which has supported a wider expansion into South America including the acquisition of a smaller practice in Chile in 2014.
It has also developed strong links in Angola where it is involved in a major retail programme for a large Angolan retail group and recently completed a 15-year development plan for the capital Luanda.
Broadway Malyan has a strong reputation in the Middle East working with some of the region’s largest property clients including Aldar and Emaar with a range of projects being led out of the Lisbon studio, most recently designing HSBC’s new headquarters in downtown Dubai for GRDI.
Over the past 20 years the Lisbon studio has delivered more than 100 buildings across a range of sectors totalling more than 1 million sqm and closer to home the studio is currently working on hotel projects Quinta das Lágrimas and Altis and a number of other major projects across a range of sectors. It has also been commissioned to create a high profile scheme for the marina at Vilamoura.
Margarida said the Lisbon studio had weathered the country’s economic downturn and had developed a robust economic model that would help secure its future in the years ahead.
She said: “The outlook for the coming few years is certainly very positive and we feel there are strong sector specific opportunities around hospitality, workplace, residential, retail and masterplanning in Portugal and the wider EMEA region.
“The Lisbon studio is now 60-people strong but experience has taught us never to be complacent and we will continue to diversify our scope so that we have the flexibility to absorb the inevitable peaks and troughs ahead.
“In my new role as chair of Broadway Malyan’s EMEA Regional Board I am looking forward to continuing to develop our expertise across the whole region. After some very challenging years there are reasons for us to be positive about Portugal’s future and Broadway Malyan is well placed to play a central role in its recovery.”