OBI opens café bar and business venue ‘The Difference’

12 December 2019

The multi-functional high-tech events and meeting space on Mosley Street offers ‘grab & go’ coffee, pizza and a bar

Commercial real estate consultancy OBI has opened a multi-functional café bar and business venue in the heart of Manchester city centre.

‘The Difference’, named after the nine-year-old company’s slogan, is located a few doors away from the OBI Group’s headquarters on Mosley Street, one of the city’s busiest thoroughfares.

Will Lewis, co-founder of OBI, said The Difference is a public space that evolves as the working day progresses.

Visitors can expect a fast paced ‘grab & go’ coffee offer, pizza served from lunchtime onwards while a bar opens early evening.

The environment also contains a high-tech meeting and events space boasting large presentation screens and market-leading technology – available for anything from presentations to company away days and catered dining.

Branding and product launches will also be held in a private merchandising space within The Difference.

The launch of the venue comes after a record breaking 2018 for OBI, which saw the real estate consultancy transact 42% of the total office space in Manchester city centre.

Will Lewis said: “The Difference is without doubt the boldest move we have made in our near 10-year history. But it’s also one of the most exciting projects as we fully believe in what we are bringing to the market. We have seen how the worlds of real estate and hospitality are merging and we wanted to experience this first-hand as this will assist when advising our clients on activating spaces.”

“Based a stone’s throw from our office on the corner of St Peter’s Square The Difference offers a place for great coffee, pizza and even a beer and is also a space for friends, clients and contacts to do business or socialise.”

He added: “When planning the launch some time ago we envisaged a multi-functional space that transforms throughout the working day and I believe, with the fit-out complete and doors open that is what we have achieved.

“Whether it’s brunch, business or breathing space, The Difference is a multi-purpose space for ideas to come alive, relationships to flourish and business to get done.”

OBI’s landlord and occupier clients include Aviva Investors, Allied London, Bruntwood, Kinrise, Property Alliance Group,, and The Hut Group (THG).

The commercial real estate consultancy expects client meetings, marketing presentations and pitches with a difference to be held in the new venue and is encouraging other businesses to do the same.

The Difference is open from 7:00am to 8:00pm Monday to Friday.

About OBI

OBI employs 32 people and provides advice to clients across its multi-discipline services, which include leasing and investment, office acquisitions, business relocations, interior design, project management and dilapidations. The collection of services is known as the ‘OBI Difference’.

Earlier this year the multi-award-winning real estate consultancy launched spin-off business Studio OBI, an integrated creative agency providing branding, marketing materials, online platforms, video and CGIs for its clients. The company also now has a presence in Leeds, following an expansion into Yorkshire this summer.

OBI also boasts its own TV channel, OBI TV, as well as The OBI Journal, a twice-yearly published magazine covering the latest intelligence and insights on Manchester’s restaurants, property, fashion, tech and more.

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