Facebook has launched a new office in the heart of London, creating 800 new jobs in the capital. With a focus on engineering, the LDN-LAB at Rathbone Place will bring more than just new jobs to the capital.
By increasing its UK workforce by more than 50 per cent, Facebook’s new office is a timely suggestion that despite Brexit the UK – and London – is still an attractive base for major technology companies. By the end of next year, Facebook will employ 2,300 people in the UK as it continues to grow its workforce this side of the pond.
The Frank Gehry-designed offices in Rathbone Place, just off Oxford Street, will also house developer, marketing and sales teams. It will also be home to LDN_LAB, a scheme under which tech startups will be invited to take part in three-month programmes designed to help accelerate their development. Facebook will be looking for an initial five to six startups to join the first programme with applications starting on Monday. The company’s engineering, product and other experts will give their time to support a planned 20 startups next year.
Nicola Mendelsohn, vice-president of Facebook’s European operations, said: “Today’s announcements show that Facebook is more committed than ever to the UK and in supporting the growth of the country’s innovative startups. The UK’s flourishing entrepreneurial ecosystem and international reputation for engineering excellence makes it one of the best places in the world to build a tech company. And we’ve built our company here – this country has been a huge part of Facebook’s story over the past decade, and I look forward to continuing our work.”
The chancellor, Philip Hammond – who laid out the importance of tech in his Budget last month – said: “The UK is not only the best place to start a new business, it’s also the best place to grow one. It’s a sign of confidence in our country that innovative companies like Facebook invest here.”