Singapore is best "value for money" city to do business: Savills

SINGAPORE came out tops among 10 cities as the best value for money location for firms to house their staff, said real estate consultant Savills.

Despite the relatively high rental costs - both for residential and commercial space - Singapore offers better value when total accommodation costs are measured against gross domestic product (GDP) per capita.

The city-state beat other developed cities such as Hong Kong, London and Tokyo to clinch the top position.

"The value of real estate is higher where more corporate revenue can be generated," said director of Savills world research Yolande Barnes.

"(Absolute) per sq ft office rents are a misleading indication of the total real estate costs faced by relocating companies,"

"In other words, it is worth paying more to accommodate an executive team in Singapore with its high GDP than (in Mumbai)."

Based on its "value for money" indicator, the cities which ranked below Singapore were Sydney, Moscow, New York, Paris, Tokyo, London, Shanghai, Hong Kong and Mumbai.

Traditionally, firms often look at the total costs of renting an office space as well as residential units for its staff.

When using a total cost measure, Singapore came in sixth out of the 10 most expensive cities in Savills' latest World Cities Review report.

By its estimates, it would cost US$1.005 million in office and residential rents to house two seven-member teams of a start up in a prime financial district as well as a secondary location.

Each team would comprise a chief executive, senior expatriate director, locally employed director as well as four administrative and support staff.

Cities which had even higher total accommodation costs were Hong Kong, New York, London, Paris and Tokyo.