Central London Office Space Ripe for Investors from the East
Commercial office property in Central London has shown no signs of decreasing in popularity amongst foreign investors according investment consultancy Gresham Down Capital Partners, with Chinese, Koreans and Malaysians leading the way amongst those looking to secure trophy properties.
According to reports on the property news website Propertywire.com, in excess of ┬ú2bn worth of commercial property transactions in the last month, with the websites coverage suggesting that this indicates the commercial property market in Central London has remained resilient and attractive to overseas investors.
Amongst the recent transactions was the purchase of the White Tower portfolio by US opportunity fund Carlyle, comprising of six London office buildings offering a range of office space for a cost of what was believed to be just over ┬ú670m.
Stephen Down, managing partner of specialist central London investment consultancy Gresham Down Capital Partners. Talking to the property website Down explained how he had been advising a group of investors selling River Court, the ┬ú300m European HQ of the under-fire Goldman Sachs, and how this property fits the profile of what foreign investors in the City are looking for:
ΓÇÿThis (River Court) is a good example of the type of trophy stock that appeals to the overseas market. It has been owned by the same group since it was developed in 2000 and is let to Goldman Sachs for another 15 years. It is a modern Grade A building secured to an international tenant on a long lease and the rent is low at only ┬ú36 per square foot overall compared with recent lettings on similar space at over ┬ú50.00 per square foot. It offers the investor access to the growth in rents over the next three to four years,ΓÇÖ
Highlighting recent acquisitions such as the famous Harrods store and undeveloped Park House in Oxford Street by Qatari, Down says this ads further weight to the argument that investors from outside of the UK are pouring into Central London seeking out commercial property investments.
He also suggests that there is increasing evidence that Malaysian, Korean and Chinese investors are coming to the market. ΓÇÿChinese entrepreneur Joseph Lau has been reported at the preferred bidder on the ┬ú300 million Tower 42ΓÇ¥ explained Down, ΓÇ£but we know there are a number of other Far Eastern institutions and private investors that have targeted London because of the liquidity and transparency of the market but also because of the weakness of sterling,ΓÇÖ