WELPUT increase weighting in the City with £160m of transactions
WELPUT, the Central London property trust managed by Schroder Real Estate and advised by Quintain Estates and Development plc announces two significant transactions taking the total value of acquisitions and disposals in the year to date to circa £340m. WELPUT has exchanged contracts on the sale of 16-17 Connaught Place, London W2, for £110.0m to funds managed by GWM Group, the asset and investment management company, reflecting a net initial yield of 4.7% and a capital value of £1,344 per square foot. The 81,859 sq ft property is multi-let to a range of tenants including Spencer Stuart and Hunter Boot, the renowned wellington boot company.
WELPUT, the Central London property trust managed by Schroder Real Estate and advised by Quintain Estates and Development plc announces two significant transactions taking the total value of acquisitions and disposals in the year to date to circa £340m.
WELPUT has exchanged contracts on the sale of 16-17 Connaught Place, London W2, for £110.0m to funds managed by GWM Group, the asset and investment management company, reflecting a net initial yield of 4.7% and a capital value of £1,344 per square foot. The 81,859 sq ft property is multi-let to a range of tenants including Spencer Stuart and Hunter Boot, the renowned wellington boot company.
In a separate transaction, WELPUT has acquired the long leasehold interest in 7 Bishopsgate, London, EC2, from clients of TH Real Estate for £48.9 million reflecting a net initial yield of 4.9% (including rent guarantees) and a capital value per square foot of £873.
Comprising 56,020 sq ft of Grade A office space, 7 Bishopsgate was recently refurbished to a high standard and is multi-let on rents ranging from £42.50 psf to £53.50 psf. With two vacant floors it provides WELPUT with the ability to offer flexible accommodation into a City occupational market that is restricted in the supply of sub- 10,000 sq ft floor plates.
Ker Gilchrist, Head of Investment at Quintain, commented:
“WELPUT acquired Connaught Place in 2005 and since then has undertaken significant refurbishment and fully let the building in the run up to the sale. Having completed our business plan, we decided to take the opportunity to offer the asset to the market and capitalise on the strong investor interest in well-established West End buildings.”
Nick Montgomery, Head of UK Investment at Schroder Real Estate, added: ““The disposal of Connaught and the immediate redeployment of proceeds into the City is in line with WELPUT’s strategy following the fund’s modernisation in 2014. 7 Bishopsgate offers good fundamentals in terms of location and specification and provides an opportunity to capture rental and income growth over the short to medium term.”
Gennaro Giordano, Managing Partner at GWM Group commented,
“The acquisition of Connaught represents a first step into our new strategy aimed at offering our investor base exposure to core / core+ assets in London and other major cities, with a target size of minimum £500m. We acquired a well-managed and income stabilised property in Central London which we expect will further benefit from the regeneration of the Marble Arch area in the near future.”
Peter Neal, Senior Portfolio Manager at TH Real Estate, said:
“7 Bishopsgate was acquired by our second London office fund, CLOFII, in June 2011 and a comprehensive refurbishment was completed in 2013. TH Real Estate’s business plan based on repositioning the building to create Grade A office space has been successfully completed with terms agreed to let the two remaining office floors. The sale crystalises an attractive return over the period of ownership and the sale proceeds will be returned to investors. This is our second transaction with WELPUT following their acquisition of Regent’s Wharf, Kings Cross in November last year.”
WELPUT was advised on the sale of Connaught Place by Strutt & Parker and CBRE, and on the purchase of 7 Bishopsgate by CBRE. GWM Group was advised by Cushman & Wakefield and Astezar Capital, and TH Real Estate by Savills.
For further information, please contact:
Estelle Bibby +44 (0)20 7658 3431 Schroders firstname.lastname@example.org
Dido Laurimore/ Ellie Sweeney +44 (0)20 3727 1000 FTI Consulting on behalf of WELPUT
Notes to editors:
For trade press only. To view the latest press releases from Schroders go to: http://ir.schroders.com/media
WELPUT was established in 2001 as a closed ended property unit trust under the laws of Jersey. WELPUT was converted to a more open ended structure in 2014 with the approval of its Holders. The aim of WELPUT is to provide investors with an exposure to the central London office market. The objective is to outperform the market as measured by Investment Property Databank (‘IPD’).
The primary investment focus is office properties in central London. Due to the nature of properties within central London there will be elements of other uses such as retail and residential. The intention is to focus the portfolio on large multi-let buildings. WELPUT is reserved for experienced investors who must be aware of the risks attaching to the investment.
The manager of WELPUT is Schroder Real Estate Managers (Jersey) Limited, one of the largest managers of Jersey Property Unit Trusts, covering various sectors of the UK market.
Grafton Advisors (2006) LLP, a wholly owned subsidiary of Quintain Estates and Development plc, is the Property Adviser to WELPUT. In 2012 Quintain acquired Grafton Advisors (2006) LLP, a partnership formed by the former senior management of Benchmark Group PLC who founded WELPUT in 2001.
Schroder Real Estate
Schroders has managed real estate funds since 1971 and currently has £12.1 billion* (€17.1 billion /US$19.1 billion)i of gross real estate assets under management as at 30 June 2015.
Most of the real estate funds referred to are unauthorised collective investment schemes as defined in the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000. Promotion of these funds is restricted and access to full information about these funds is only available to those exempt from the restriction.
For further information about Schroders’ real estate business visit www.schroders.com/realestate
Schroders is a global asset management company with £309.9 billion (EUR 437.4 billion/$487.4 billion) under management as at 30 June 2015. Our clients are major financial institutions including pension funds, banks and insurance companies, local and public authorities, governments, charities, high net worth individuals and retail investors.
With one of the largest networks of offices of any dedicated asset management company, we operate from 37 offices in 27 countries across Europe, the Americas, Asia and the Middle East. Schroders has developed under stable ownership for over 200 years and long-term thinking governs our approach to investing, building client relationships and growing our business.
Further information about Schroders can be found at www.schroders.com.
Past performance is not a guide to future performance and may not be repeated. The value of investments and the income from them may go down as well as up and investors may not get back the amounts originally invested.
This press release is intended for information purposes only and it is not intended as promotional material in any respect. The material is not intended as an offer or solicitation for the purchase or sale of any financial instrument.
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About GWM Group
GWM Group is an independent financial services group established in Geneva in the early 2000s and currently headquartered in Luxembourg. It currently employs over 50 professionals with offices in Luxembourg, London, Geneva, Milan, Rome and Malta. The Group is involved in institutional and private wealth fund and asset management, including the management of real estate related strategies for large institutional clients. More information on GWM group can be found on the company website www.gwmholding.com.
About TH Real Estate
TH Real Estate is an established investment management company specialising in real estate equity and debt investing worldwide. As one of the largest real estate managers in the world, TH Real Estate has the scale, capital resources and knowledge to provide creative and effective real estate investment solutions for clients. With a focus on the retail, office, logistics, debt and residential sectors, TH Real Estate emphasises sustainable practices to protect assets and maximise their value.
The company is owned by TIAA-CREF, a US financial services and Fortune 100 company, with c. £557bn assets under management*. Launched in April 2014, TH Real Estate has a dedicated global presence with offices across America, Asia and Europe, representing c. £18.2bn* of real estate assets across c. 50 funds and mandates. Together with TIAA-CREF’s US real estate assets, the global real estate platform of c.£55.3bn* represents one of the largest real estate investment management enterprises in the world.
Its products are managed by specialist teams, which apply their own experience to the management and style of their portfolios. Each team is supported by an experienced senior management team and integrated investment platform, including finance, debt and currency management, performance analytics, client service, fund and transaction structuring, development, sustainability and research.
*All figures as at 3 June 2015
i Includes holdings of Real Estate Capital Partners and Schroders Multi-asset Funds in the Real Estate AUM