EMEA Real Estate Correspondent
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Mar 5, 2010

Liberty mulls split in likely UK REIT watershed

LONDON, March 5 (Reuters) – Britain’s largest shopping mall
owner, Liberty International <LII.L>, is days from unveiling a
dramatic demerger that could signal a watershed in Britain’s
young real estate investment trust (REIT) sector.

Liberty is expected to give details in its annual results,
on March 9, of a plan to split its 6.1 billion pound ($9.6
billion) portfolio into two specialist firms, to gain an edge on
its better-capitalised rivals. [ID:nLDE61403X]

Jan 15, 2010

Investors see uncertainties in UK comm. property

LONDON, Jan 15 (Reuters) – A recent upswing in investments
in UK commercial properties masks uncertainties and risks that
could further hit rentals, real estate experts said, urging
caution when investing in the recovering market.

“The UK economy is in uncharted waters, we know rents are
falling and corporate failures are increasing, and we know
there’s this small thing called an election coming,” Ian Mason,
Schroder Property’s Head of UK Property Fund Management, said.

Jan 6, 2010

Telereal to sell RBS-tenanted UK properties

LONDON, Jan 6 (Reuters) – Property investment firm Telereal
Trillium has put up for sale 55 UK commercial properties,
principally let to the Royal Bank of Scotland <RBS.L>, to test
investor appetite for larger portfolios, it said on Wednesday.

Telereal, owned by the Pears family, has appointed CB
Richard Ellis <CBG.N> to advise on the sale, with a guiding
price of 475 million pounds ($758 million) for the properties,
including the historic London offices of the Queen’s bank,

Jan 4, 2010

Hammerson sells Paris office below book value

LONDON, Jan 4 (Reuters) – Anglo-French property investor
Hammerson <HMSO.L> said on Monday it has sold a Paris office
building to a client of Invesco <IVZ.N> for 84.5 million euros
($121 million), about 14 percent below book value.

The seven-storey property at 148 Rue de l’Universite, which
is 44 percent vacant, had a book value of 97.8 million euros at
end-June 2009 and the sale will be reflected in Hammerson’s 2009
financial results, it said in a statement.
At 1144 GMT, Hammerson shares were down 4 percent, the top
percentage faller on the FTSE <.FTSE>, and underperforming the
1.9 percent fall in the EPRA/NAREIT index <.FTELUK> of UK real
estate stocks.

Dec 2, 2009

Schroders sees volatile 2010 for UK comm. property

LONDON, Dec 2 (Reuters) – Asset management firm Schroders
<SDR.L> expects 2010 to be a volatile year for UK commercial
property, with economic uncertainty and debt issues buffeting a
market barely emerging from a two-year downturn.

British commercial property values in October staged the
largest monthly rise in nearly four years after falling 44
percent from a mid-2007 peak, but the market could still be hit
by further tenant failures in a weak economy, Schroders said.

Dec 1, 2009

Shaftesbury sees higher 2010 rents; H2 values rose

LONDON, Dec 1 (Reuters) – London landlord Shaftesbury
<SHB.L> expects strong demand for West End retail, restaurants,
and apartments to boost rents next year, after the value of its
properties showed a marked recovery in its second half.

Shaftesbury, which owns more than 450 properties
concentrated in the West End, said on Tuesday demand for space
in the shopping and leisure district has been resilient
throughout the year despite the downturn in the UK economy.

Nov 19, 2009

Derwent London plots new office developments

LONDON, Nov 19 (Reuters) – British developer Derwent London
<DLN.L> said on Thursday it is targeting to deliver new office
projects from late 2011, backed by improving sentiments and
expectations of rising rents in the Central London market.

“Things are more encouraging on the property side … when
you look at the situation 12 months back, I think we’ve gone to
a stronger and more confident situation,” Chief Executive John
Burns said in an interview.

Nov 18, 2009

British Land’s premium to NAV too good to last?

LONDON, Nov 18 (Reuters) – British Land <BLND.L> shares have
rebounded nearly 60 percent since March, far ahead of the UK’s
market for bricks and mortar, splitting opinions on whether the
blue chip real estate firm’s rally still has legs.

The UK property stocks index <.FTNMX8730> — dominated by
British Land and its peers Land Securities <LAND.L> and
Hammerson <HMSO.L> — doubled in eight months, outperforming the
FTSE 100’s <.FTSE> 45 percent rise over the same period.

Nov 5, 2009

Segro says UK rental mkt still fragile

LONDON, Nov 5 (Reuters) – Europe’s largest listed industrial
landlord, Segro <SGRO.L>, said on Thursday new enquiries for
space continued to fall in the third quarter, although early
signs of recovery have emerged.

“It’s all a bit fragile still. We have seen since the end of
the summer break enquiries that have been encouraging … but
I’m certainly not getting carried away,” Chief Executive Ian
Coull said in a conference call.

Nov 4, 2009

UK comm. property recovery at risk -Aviva, HSBC

LONDON, Nov 4 (Reuters) – Britain’s commercial property
market recovery could be short-lived, if yield-chasing investors
bid up prices without a corresponding improvement in the
economy, two major property investors said on Wednesday.

In the third quarter, unlisted UK property funds raised the
most cash from investors in two years, a report showed this
week, as values rebounded in August after falling 45 percent
from their mid-2007 peak. [ID:nL335486]
“There is significant scope for yields to rally from here,”
Aviva Investors head of real estate investment strategy David
Skinner told Reuters on the sidelines of an industry conference.

    • About Daryl

      "I am Reuters real estate correspondent based in London, covering Europe, Middle East and Africa. I cover global listed and unlisted real estate markets, real estate finance and banking, and write interviews, analysis, and other stories on both the sell-side – listed real estate investment trusts, developers, investment banks; and the buy-side – private equity, pension and insurance, and sovereign wealth funds. I have a special interest in European real estate financing, government interventions in Europe and its effects, emerging Europe and China’s booming but haphazard property markets."
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