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The Weekly Wrap

Former Barclays HQ to be ‘sold’ for £350m!

The well-known 20 Gracechurch Street building is considered to be sold for up to £350m according to CoStar.

Joint partnership of Northwood Investors and Aviva Investors have engaged one of the real estate companies over a potential sale of former Barclays headquarters, 20 Gracechurch Street. The building has recently gone under a major refurbishment as the owners are looking for a buyer for a 50% interest in the development. However it is now considered as an outright sale of the building.

The 17-storey building provides 302,000 sq ft of office space and has been completely renovated in 2008 with a double height entrance and a new façade.

In 2013, the freehold Interest in 20 Gracechurch Street was sold to Northwood for £120 by the Atlas Capital Group, reflecting a yield of 5.2%. This deal was funded by debt from Aareal Bank. The freehold interest was subject to a rent sharing lease with Aviva Investors, also a comprehensive refurbishment was completed by Aviva and Atlas back in 2009. The property contains a roster of insurance and financial tenants and currently is the headquarters of Catlin Insurance which occupies 128,000 sq ft on a lease which will expire in April 2025.

There are other leases that have various expirations between 2024 and 2025.

Her Majesty the Queen pays a visit to The City of London

Queen Elizabeth II has arrived at the City of London on November 7th to visit the new Schroders Headquarters to open up a new chapter in the history of the firm which has traded in London for many years.

The international asset management Company has already been using the offices for the past two months which are at the Barbican. During her time there, the Queen was given a tour around the building, showcasing how it aims to blend the City of London’s history with its future. The headquarters have been built to accommodate two ancient parts of the capital, The Roman London Wall and the ruins of the medieval tower of St. Alphage’s Church.

During the Queens visit, Her Majesty met many of the people working at the firm including the company’s longest serving employee and those on the trading floor.

Johan Heinrich Schroder and his Brother Johan Friedrich set up the firm back in 1804 which was the beginning of the company’s financial life in London. The Queen was shown some of the artwork which was made up of bonds and share certificates that was used over the past 200 years by the business.

More lettings at The Scalpel as Tower now half let

National Australia Bank and insurer Lombard International are the latest occupiers-to-be at the newest office tower on London's skyline, The Scalpel, at 52 Lime Street, EC3.

Over half of the tower, which owes its unusual shape to protected views of St Paul's Cathedral, is now pre-let or under offer as the building nears completion.

National Australia Bank (NAB) has taken 26,864 sq ft on levels 9 and 10, with Lombard International signing for 9,189 sq ft on level 27. Of a total of 387,000 sq ft, just 180,000 sq ft remains to be let on floors ranging in size from approximately 6,500 to 15,500 sq ft.

Rolfe Lakin, chief financial officer of NAB said: “After months of deliberation we are really looking forward to relocating to 52 Lime Street in late 2019 or early 2020."

John Hillman, group chief executive at Lombard International, said: “Having looked at various options, we felt this prestigious City location and iconic building best represents our brand and values. We look forward to welcoming our partners and clients when we move in during the latter part of quarter one next year.”

The 190m tall skyscraper comprises over 387,000 sq ft of office floor space over 35 floors.

Situated on the corner of Lime Street and Leadenhall Street, opposite the Lloyd's building and adjacent to the Willis Building, the development also includes a new 11,000 sq ft public square at the base of the building as well as enhanced retail.

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