• Major regeneration planned for site near Nottingham which comprises just under 50 acres of industrial and office space, including 20 acres of cleared land for development
• JV partners Bridges and Chancerygate intend to refurbish existing buildings and develop new commercial space, thus creating jobs and boosting economic dynamism in the local area
• The site was previously part of a portfolio owned by VBR Investments Limited
• KPMG and JLL advised the vendors on the transaction
LONDON/ NOTTINGHAM, 9 OCTOBER 2015:
A joint venture between The Bridges Property Alternatives Fund, which is managed by specialist sustainable and impact investor Bridges Ventures (“Bridges”), and Chancerygate, a specialist industrial property company, has bought Beeston Business Park in Nottinghamshire from VBR Investments (“VBRi”) in a deal worth £22m.
KPMG advised the vendors on the transaction, marketing the site alongside JLL.
Beeston Business Park comprises 412,000 sq. ft. of office and industrial accommodation in a range of buildings on a 48-acre site – including 20 acres of cleared land for development – plus a 9-acre sports field. Located approximately 3 miles south-west of Nottingham city centre, on a prominent site next to Beeston Railway Station, the property falls within a European Assisted Area and benefits from Enterprise Zone Status.
Bridges and Chancerygate are now exploring options for a mixed-use redevelopment. A portion of the site has been lying derelict and unused for over 10 years, so there is significant potential to refurbish existing buildings to bring them back into beneficial use. The partners also intend to develop additional buildings on the cleared land – including high-quality office space, of which there is a significant under-supply in this area of the East Midlands. This should generate large numbers of new jobs, mainly for smaller businesses. The partners will also look to introduce environmental and sustainability features across the site where appropriate.
This is the second collaboration between Bridges and Chancerygate: the partners previously joined forces for the highly successful development and £60m sale of The Curve student accommodation project in east London.
This investment is in line with Bridges’ long-standing focus on investing in SME office space, particularly in underserved areas – which, it believes, can generates both positive social impact and clear financial value for investors. SMEs are key to economic growth in the UK: they drive competition, stimulate innovation and contribute disproportionately to job creation, accounting for 60% of all private-sector employment. Recent Bridges deals in this sector have included 158-170 Edmund Street, two adjacent office buildings in Birmingham, which were sold in December to F&C UK Property Fund for £11.65m, reflecting a yield of 5.75%.
The Beeston Business Park sale is the latest in a programme of disposals KPMG has undertaken for VBRi. The site was the last remaining one from their Marble Portfolio, a group of property assets
managed on behalf of VBRi by M7 Real Estate; the rest of the portfolio was sold to Goldman Sachs International for a price in the region of £110 million earlier this year.
Tom Tyler, Investment Director at Bridges, said: “Bridges and Chancerygate are delighted to have acquired this property, which we see as a landmark regeneration opportunity. This area of the East Midlands is extremely popular for business space, and this site benefits from an excellent location with strong transport links. By bringing some of its existing space back into commercial use, and by building high-quality new space to meet the local demand, we believe we can deliver both significant social impact for the local area and also strong returns for our investors.”
Eddie Cook, Chancerygate Managing Director, commented: “We are looking forward to working in partnership with Bridges again on this exciting scheme in Beeston, and to bringing our asset management and development skills to a project that offers substantial potential for regeneration and income enhancement.”
Stephen Barter, Chair of Real Estate Advisory at KPMG UK, said: “This sale brings to a close the successful sale of the Marble Portfolio. Working closely with our clients, we ensured a competitive sales process which attracted strong interest from the market.”
Matthew Cheyne, director at M7 Real Estate, said: “M7, as asset manager of the portfolio, was delighted by the attractive outcome, which reflected the successful asset management programme M7 had implemented at the site.”