Apple eyes Munich expansion with 322,000-square-foot office rental

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Apple is increasing its operations in Germany after making an agreement to rent out an entire office building that is still under construction in Munich, a location that could hold another 1,500 employees once it is completed in 2021.

The "Karl" office building is currently being built on the former Mahag site on Karlstrasse in Munich, with the location set to offer approximately 30,000 square meters (322,917 square feet) of floor space. Despite still being built, the building's owners have confirmed the entire building has been let out to a single unnamed client.

Though Apple typically does not comment on in-progress deals relating to its office spaces, Sueddeutsche reports Clemens Baumgartner, a business consultant, confirmed the company's involvement. Apple CEO Tim Cook reportedly met Baumgartner at Oktoberfest during a visit to Germany late in 2019.

"This will secure and create high-quality jobs in our city," Baumgartner said. "I use the Oktoberfest to get in touch with business players and to talk about the advantages of Munich as a location for technology and science. If Mr Cook has found positive feedback, I would be happy."

Apple currently operates its Bavarian Design Center in Munich, one of the Cook visit venues, which plays host to approximately 300 engineers from around the world. In one interview, Cook suggested the city was valuable as a team could be put together there that couldn't be created elsewhere, as well as citing the supply of graduates of nearby universities as being a valuable asset to the city.

It is unclear if the existing Bavarian Design Center will be rolled into the new offices or operate separately, but Apple is already seeking people to expand the workforce. More than 60 job profiles have been put up for the Munich location, covering a variety of research and development topics.

Given Apple's acquisition of Intel's modem business in July, it is plausible some of the office space could be used for Intel's engineers based in Germany who worked in the field.

Apple isn't the only tech giant interested in Munich, with Google declaring in October it would expand its current Munich workforce from 1,000 employees to 1,500, along with plans to build approximately 41,000 square meters of office space. Amazon and Microsoft also have their German headquarters in the city.