Tesco has agreed to sell a number of mothballed development sites to privately held real estate investment management firm Meyer Bergman. The deal saw Tesco’s property development arm Spenhill offload a total of fourteen sites across London, the South East and Bath to the investor for £250 million.
All of the sites are suitable for either mixed-use or residential development, and so far the companies involved have reached completion on eleven sales. The remainder, according to Tesco chief executive Dave Lewis, will be completed in due course.
Mr Lewis believes that the sale of the fourteen sites is a positive step forward for both Tesco and for the local communities set to benefit from the deal.
He says; “Since announcing our decision to build fewer stores we have been working with Meyer Bergman to bring forward investment on our Spenhill sites.
“We are very pleased to have agreed a deal with Meyer Bergman that will bring forward significant investment for these local communities, including opportunities for residential development.
“We will be working with Meyer Bergman and local Councils in the coming weeks to complete a formal handover and look forward to the delivery of investment on these sites.”
During the past few years, Tesco has turned from its former “Tesco towns” policy of the early 2000s which saw the supermarket giant rapidly expanding and ‘landbanking’ for future development.
As a result, it has a significant amount of land available for sale, with the proceeds from such activity to be used to strengthen and protect its balance sheet in line with its current strategic priority.
Chief executive officer at Meyer Bergman, Markus Meijer, says; “We see this investment as an opportunity to give new impetus to the Spenhill projects, to make Tesco’s place-making ambitions for the sites happen and to make an enduring contribution to local communities.
“Backed by long-term and prudent global institutional capital, Meyer Bergman has a wealth of experience and expertise in the development and asset management of mixed-use properties.
“We look forward to engaging with local stakeholders so that immediately we can start moving the various Spenhill projects forward.”
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