While the U.K.’s imminent withdrawal from the European Union seems to grow messier by the day, tech giant Facebook is giving the region a vote of confidence by deciding to massively expand its footprint there.
A company spokesperson confirmed to Reuters today that Facebook has acquired new office space in London, effectively doubling its size in the city.
“Today’s news reflects our commitment to the U.K. and our desire to grow our business and the U.K. economy,” Steve Hatch, Facebook’s managing director for Northern Europe, said in a statement to Reuters.
Facebook first arrived in London more than a decade ago but has been ramping up its engineering headquarters there in recent years. The company opened a new London headquarters late last year, saying it planned to expand to 2,300 employees by the end of 2018.
Hatch told Reuters that the company had just bought another 600,000 square feet of office space, which would double its total office space in London and provide enough room for up to 6,000 employees.
Despite the turmoil surrounding Brexit, London has managed to remain an alluring target for expanding Silicon Valley giants. Last year, Google broke ground on its new London headquarters, which will have room for 7,000 employees.
And Facebook is making the investment despite a rocky relationship with the British government. Since the Cambridge Analytica scandal broke, members of the British Parliament have been investigating the social networking giant and have grown increasingly critical of what they see as the company’s reluctance to fully answer their questions.
Two weeks ago, the U.K. digital watchdog fined Facebook $664,000 and issued a scathing report on the way its platform was abused in both the U.S. presidential election and the Brexit vote.
Still, London specifically and Europe more broadly have become critical sources of talent for tech companies, particularly for researchers and developers working on artificial intelligence and machine learning.