Business Continuity Risks: Renting an Office Unit in the Philippines

Ortigas Center continues to be the choice of many multinational companies that want to set up shop in the Philippines. The business district area, which is covered by Quezon City, Pasig, and Mandaluyong, is home to several large multinational companies, including foreign start-ups. Most of these companies are leasing office spaces as well as entire buildings. Despite the increasing numbers of companies in the area, should you join the trend and get a for-rent office in Ortigas Center? Or should you look for a different place after considering significant business risks?

Business Continuity Risks in Ortigas Center

Every place, not just the Ortigas Center, has several business continuity risks. These can include human-made and natural hazards. Some of the artificial risks include crime and the failure of utilities, such as electricity and water. Violent crimes and the possibility of arson are also factors that need to be taken into account by prospective office unit tenants. Although there have been no significant artificial incidents that disrupted business operations in the area, the lessor and its client should have coordinated measures if ever such events arise in the future.

Minor risks also include the impairment of public transportation or significant travel disruptions. Most of these incidents involve road closures and the near-constant breaking down of the nearby Metro Rail Transit-3, which has 13 stations that include the Ortigas Center station. This line, which lies smack in the center of EDSA, stretches from Metro Manila’s north to the southern area of Taft in Pasay City.

For the inherent risks, the country experiences tropical cyclone and monsoon seasons that carry heavy rains. These rains commonly cause flooding of major roads and low-lying areas across Metro Manila, including Ortigas Center. There were incidents in the past wherein employees were not able to report for work due to heavily flooded roads leading to Ortigas Center. Several parts of the business district are also prone to flooding.

Earthquakes are another risk that will not only disrupt business operations but also pose a threat to human life and property. Recently, a magnitude 6.3 earthquake struck the country, and the tremors reached Ortigas Center. Although there were no injuries or significant damage, the earthquake disrupted work and business operations across the district. Authorities closed rail operations, suspended flights, and cut power following the quake.

Prospective tenants are encouraged to look into the capacity of the lessors of office spaces or buildings and how they will respond to specific business continuity issues.

What to Consider: Building Amenities and Administration

New real estate projects in Ortigas Center are starting to offer their spaces and promising amenities equal to their asking rates. The company is recommended to consider mixed-use projects if it aims to conveniently house expatriates near the workplace. These mixed-use projects commonly include basic amenities (pools, gyms, restaurants, and parking spaces), state-of-the-art engineering and architectural designs, and security provisions, such as CCTVs and X-ray machines.

Possible Alternatives

Instead of searching for for-rent office units in Ortigas Center, you can try to permanently acquire a property or try the cheaper coworking spaces in the area. Many operators have since emerged to satisfy the business needs of companies, which are mostly start-ups. These coworking spaces, which can house at most 50 employees, can be used as you make a name for your company.


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