Despite the decline of direct BPO investments in the first half of 2017, real estate companies are expecting offshore online gaming companies to continue their demand for office spaces.

Megaworld Corporation, a known real estate company that develops modern townships that are also sprawling BPO hubs, has noted that the wave of new BPO players coming in have been regressively slow compared to the previous years.

With the Trump administration championing the movement of ingesting back jobs that have been traditionally outsourced, Megaworld Corporation predicts that entry of new BPO accounts will further slow down.

As BPO slows down, offshore gaming companies have remarkably expanded as a hot property when it comes to the office leasing market.

“But POGO (Philippine Offshore Gaming Operators) came into the picture. So that took up the vacuum that was left behind by new players,” said Megaworld senior vice president Jericho Go in a statement that was quoted by GMA News.

According to Mr Go, offshore gaming companies have combined to occupy between 60,000 to 80,000 square meters of office spaces in the leasing market.

The preference of location by most offshore gaming companies according to Mr Go is the central business district. Currently, Megaworld has built townships around Eastwood Libis, Newport, the Fort BGC, and in Cebu that features serviced offices.

In a related statement, Leechiu Property Consultants (LPC) stated that the demand for office spaces by offshore gaming companies is still on the rise and predicts that the demand will increase by as much as 50% that is seen to equal or even surpass BPO demand for office spaces.

“In effect, what we are saying is we barely scratched the surface,” Mr Go said.

“There are roughly about 45 to 50 [POGO] licenses that have been approved by the government. These licensees occupy 10,000 square meters of space.”

The Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (PAGCOR) regulate the entry of online gaming companies through a licensing process. Foreign gaming companies who are accredited with PAGCOR are known as the Philippine Offshore Gaming Operators (POGO).

Offshore gaming firms are in a “big rush” to get office space in the Philippines “because they want to capture market share early,” added Mr Go.

The country is undergoing an infrastructure boom like never before and with the government pledging more resources in constructing infrastructure outside that of Metro Manila, BPO and Offshore gaming companies will soon find more destinations for office leasing.

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