British Airways could sell its Heathrow HQ in 'hybrid work' push

Opened in 1998 at a cost of £200m, Waterside could prove too big for BA in post-COVID era.

By Bloomberg News, March 19 2021
British Airways could sell its Heathrow HQ in 'hybrid work' push

British Airways is considering putting its sprawling headquarters in London up for sale as the flagship U.K. carrier plans for a so-called hybrid approach to working, according to an internal email.

The airline has hired a specialist property company to gauge if a sale of the building, known as Waterside, would be beneficial, Stuart Kennedy, BA’s director of people, wrote in an email to staff seen by Bloomberg News.

He said the carrier was weighing ways of blending elements of remote working along with office-based work and was seeking views from staff about how the company should go about it.

BA, part of IAG, has sold art, retired old airplanes and cut thousands of staff in a bid to survive the decimation of aviation brought about by the Covid-19 pandemic. Kennedy said it was still early days, and that a sale of Waterside was just one of the options available to the carrier.

Designed by Norwegian architect Niels A. Torp, Waterside was opened in 1998 and consists of six areas, each representing a continent that BA served.

A BA spokesman said in an email that the carrier had restructured its business to emerge from the crisis and confirmed it was considering whether it still needed such a large headquarters. The Financial Times earlier reported on the possible sale.

This article is published under license from Bloomberg Media: the original article can be viewed here