AI imaging specialist moves Group HQ to Hodge House in Cardiff city centre: Knight Frank

Ultrasound software and simulation specialist Intelligent Ultrasound Group plc (“Intelligent Ultrasound”) has moved its group headquarters to the newly-refurbished Hodge House in Cardiff city centre.

Owner Legal & General has undertaken a comprehensive refurbishment and re-branding to bring the 110,000 sq ft, eight-storey Grade II listed Hodge House office building in Cardiff city centre into the 21st century.  The impressive and ornately detailed Portland stone façade with sash windows, originally inspired by the architecture of London’s Regent Street, has been cleaned, sympathetically repaired and redecorated.  Internally, the 1990s refurbishment has been stripped back to reveal original cast iron decorative columns from the 1915 construction, riveted steel structure from the 1930s and a variety of exposed brick and plasterwork.

Intelligent Ultrasound has taken 7,188 sq ft of fully furnished and work ready office space on the 6th floor as part of Legal & General’s Capsule offer – which moves away from the traditional Category-A fit out and longer lease length, to fully fitted space let on a more flexible basis. Capsule offers occupiers the benefit of fully fitted-out office space with digital connectivity and a simplified leasing process.

Intelligent Ultrasound, which produces advanced ultrasound training simulators and artificial intelligence (AI) image analysis software for medical practitioners and universities worldwide, has outgrown its previous headquarters in the Cardiff Medicentre. The move, which also includes relocating its distribution and manufacturing facilities to a new base in Caerphilly, will help to accommodate Intelligent Ultrasound’s continued growth.  Intelligent Ultrasound currently employs 52 people, with a sales office in Atlanta in the USA and 30 resellers across the world.

Helen Jones, chief financial officer of Intelligent Ultrasound Group plc, said: “We looked at a number of office premises but found the Capsule office at Hodge House really attractive as we could move in rapidly and cut out a big front-end cost by taking offices which are already fully fitted out.

“The space we have leased also enables us to bring our growing R&D teams together in an effective way and create a showcase space for our range of simulator and AI products.

“Hodge House gives us large open-plan working spaces where we can work safely under Covid in a very prestigious building close to rail links, bars, restaurants and shops. It fits our requirements perfectly.”

Matt Phillips, head of the Cardiff office of global property consultancy Knight Frank said: “Like many businesses in the new Covid-19 era, Intelligent Ultrasound has identified that it needs to house its staff in a building that they will actively want to come to work in – and that means high quality, flexible space in an excellent location that they can travel to, and work in, safely.”

John James, director of joint agent Fletcher Morgan said: “Hodge House has a superb central location opposite the Stadium and in close proximity to Central Square, very close to main public transport hubs and with all the amenities of central Cardiff at hand  – it’s a very attractive proposition.”

Andrew Mercer, Office Sector Lead at LGIM Real Assets said: “Capsule is a re-imagined process offering flexible, high quality, furnished and work ready fitted office space throughout the UK. It is a mutually beneficial option, acknowledging the frustrations that send many occupiers towards flexible providers, while retaining the traditional benefits of leasing from an established provider.  We are delighted to welcome Intelligent Ultrasound to Hodge House.”

Legal & General was advised in the transaction by property consultancies Knight Frank and Fletcher Morgan.