IBRC in talks to sell trophy McNamara block for €100m
Northwood Investors has been actively looking to buy distressed property assets in Ireland, as well as foreign assets financed by Irish banks
The Finsbury Dials building in London was bought by Bernard McNamara’s Grattan Properties in 2007, at the peak of the British commercial property boom.
Northwood Investors, the US property company that recently bid unsuccessfully on the Treasury Holdings’ Opera portfolio, is in talks with the liquidators of Irish Bank Resolution Corporation (IBRC) to buy a trophy office block in London, once owned by Bernard McNamara, for about £85 million (€99 million).
Northwood, which was founded by former Blackstone chief executive John Kukral, is in negotiations to buy the Finsbury Dials building in London’s financial district. It is let to investment banking giant JP Morgan, with up to a decade remaining on the lease.
IBRC is being advised on the sale by Savills, while Northwood’s adviser is GM Real Estate. Industry magazine Property Week reported that Northwood was “closing in” on the purchase, although it is understood that the talks still have some way to go. Northwood has reportedly made an offer at a yield of 7 per cent.
Northwood has been actively looking to buy a number of distressed property assets in Ireland, and also foreign assets financed by Irish banks. Kennedy Wilson beat it to the Opera portfolio, which included Stillorgan Shopping Centre, earlier this summer. Northwood succeeded last year with a €27 million bid for the headquarters of Bord Gáis.
New York Palace hotel
Mr Kukral’s company has been investing heavily in recent years, notably buying the New York Palace hotel from Middle Eastern investors for about $400 million (€299 million). The Finsbury Dials deal, if it closes, will be Northwood’s third London deal in recent months
Finsbury Dials was bought by Mr McNamara’s Grattan Properties in 2007, at the peak of the British commercial property boom. Grattan, along with Anglo Irish Private Banking, reportedly paid €112 million for the eight-storey, 142,000sq ft building.