Sunday, October 14, 2007

Royal Bank of Scotland Seeking £900 Million Sale Leaseback of UK Property Portfolio

Property Week - October 12, 2007

The Royal Bank of Scotland has secretly put a £900m portfolio of property up for sale to help fund its takeover of Dutch bank ABN Amro. Cushman & Wakefield is marketing the portfolio of sale-and-leaseback assets. It is the largest part of a £1.75bn raft of property sales to help fund the €71.1bn (£49.2bn) takeover, which went unconditional this week.

The £900m portfolio, codenamed Project Acorn, includes the Strand head office of the Queen’s bank, Coutts, Property Week can reveal. Among the other assets are RBS offices and bank branches at 1 Princes Street in Edinburgh and 28 Cavendish Square in London’s West End. The portfolio, which is three-quarters offices and a quarter high street bank branches, comprises 2.1m sq ft across 63 properties. It produces £47m a year in rent.

It is thought that RBS would consider providing debt for the potential bidder to ease the sale. The final bid deadline is expected in mid-November.

RBS has also put a third tranche of high street bank branches up for sale through Cushman & Wakefield, in a £200m package under the name of Liberty 3. It comprises about 150 freeholds and long leaseholds, totalling around 1.1m sq ft. RBS has sold two other Liberty portfolios since 2005 – the £100m Liberty portfolio and the £75m Liberty 2 to Joseph Ackerman.

The bank is also selling a £650m portfolio of four hotels that it had unsuccessfully tried to sell to Vector Hospitality. CB Richard Ellis Hotels advises on the sale, which includes the Waldorf Hilton and Cumberland hotels in London, the Park Inn at Heathrow and the Marriott Victoria & Albert in Manchester.

RBS would not comment on any of the sales. Sphere: Related Content

No comments:

Wikinvest Wire