Merchant Square in Belfast sold for £87m
Oakland Holdings has completed the freehold sale of Merchant Square in Belfast to a Middle Eastern investor for £87m reflecting a yield of 5.23%.
Merchant Square reached practical completion in June 2020 and provides 240,000 sq ft of mixed-use accommodation comprising 225,000 sq ft of Grade A offices and six retail units.
The office space is let in its entirety to PwC until 2040 with tenant only break options in 2030 and 2035 and produces a total income of £4.86m per annum.
Merchant Square represents one of the most successful speculative office developments in the UK regions and the largest ever private sector office letting in NI. Once occupied, Merchant Square will be PwC’s largest office outside London with 3,000 employees.
PwC in Northern Ireland is PwC’s fastest-growing UK region and Belfast is PwC’s recognised global centre for technology, digital advisory services and research.
The sale is one of the largest regional office transactions to close in the UK since the start of the pandemic and the highest value office transaction ever recorded in Northern Ireland.
Guy Hollis of Oakland Holdings said: “We are proud to have created one of the biggest commercial property schemes in Northern Ireland. Five years ago, Merchant Square was a concept for a quality speculative building which reflected the demand for office space in Belfast. Now built and fully let, it has attracted interest from global investors. Merchant Square is an indication of what Belfast can achieve.”
Noel Lander, Director at JLLmadded: “The landmark sale of Merchant Square demonstrates the investor appetite for best in class regional offices with secure income streams and strong ESG credentials”.
Oakland was advised by JLL, A&L Goodbody and KPMG; the purchaser was advised by SPS Investment, King & Spalding International LLP, TLT LLP and BDO LLP.
A message from the Editor:
Thank you for reading this story on our website. While I have your attention, I also have an important request to make of you.
In order for us to continue to provide high quality and trusted local news on this free-to-read site, I am asking you to also please purchase a copy of our newspaper whenever you are able to do so.
Our journalists are highly trained and our content is independently regulated by IPSO to some of the most rigorous standards in the world. But being your eyes and ears comes at a price. So we need your support more than ever to buy our newspapers during this crisis.
With the coronavirus lockdown having a major impact on many of our local valued advertisers - and consequently the advertising that we receive - we are more reliant than ever on you helping us to provide you with news and information by buying a copy of our newspaper when you can safely.
You can also enjoy unlimited access to the best news from across Northern Ireland and the UK by subscribing to newsletter.co.uk
With a digital subscription, you can read more than five articles, see fewer ads, enjoy faster load times, and get access to exclusive newsletters and content. Visit https://www.newsletter.co.uk/subscriptions now to sign up.