Triple Asset Sale nets British Land £220m

Posted on 8 January, 2015 by Cliff Goodwin

British Land has continued is winter clear out with the sale of a triple-asset portfolio to Legal & General Property for almost £220m.


The latest disposal includes the Kingswood Retail Park near Hull for £58m, the House of Fraser building in central Birmingham — still referred to by many as “Rackhams” after its former occupier — for £71.4m, and the Grenfell Island mixed office, leisure and retail complex in Maidenhead for £90.2m.

The deals follow the pre-Christmas sell-off of the Green Lanes Shopping Centre in Barnstaple, Devon, for £36.1m to a private client of Rockspring Property Investment Managers.

In a statement British Land says the activity is in line with its strategy to evolve its portfolio to meet the needs of its occupiers and their customers. “Throughout the financial year, we have taken advantage of strong investment markets to make selective disposals of more mature assets,” adds the company.

“These latest deals bring total sales of UK income generating assets to around £620m over the last 12 months, with a net rental income associated with these assets to more than £16m.” The proceeds, says BL, will be used to repay bank facilities.

Hull’s Kingswood Retail Park is a freehold out-of-town retail site of 130,000 sq ft.  It is fully let to 14 retailers holding average unexpired leases of just over eight years.

The House of Fraser building in Birmingham’s Corporation Street covers 490,000 sq ft and is fully let to the national retailer. The street remains one of the city’s main shopping hubs, but has suffered from shoppers favouring the Bullring and also from disruption caused by building work for the Midland Metro extension.

Grenfell Island in Maidenhead is a 197,500 sq ft freehold office, leisure and retail block completed in 2000. Its 112,804 sq ft of office space is let to the mobile phone operator Hutchison 3G. The remaining leisure and retail space is fully let until 2025.

Explaining the sell-off strategy British Land’s Head of Retail, Charles Maudsley (pictured), said: “Our focus in retail is to allow consumers to shop in a way that suits them, so we are evolving our portfolio to match their expectations.

“At the half year, we said we would be making selective disposals and we are pleased that the recent deals were all achieved at prices ahead of book value, and have generated attractive returns.”

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