Belfast Harbour buys Obel 68 office block for £15m
Sale of seven-storey development comes amid huge growth in city’s office rental market
The Obel office complex in Belfast, with the Obel Tower, Ireland’s tallest building
Belfast Harbour has completed a property deal, estimated to be worth more than £15 million, to expand its real estate portfolio closer to the city centre with the acquisition of Obel 68. It was acquired from US fund Marathon Asset Management.
The seven-floor office development is a major city landmark and is part of a complex that includes Ireland’s tallest building, the Obel Tower.
The 52,000sq ft Obel 68 is currently let to international law firm Allen & Overy, which employs more than 500 people in Belfast.
Joe O’Neill, Belfast Harbour’s chief executive, said: “The Obel office building is contiguous with our City Quays regeneration development, and its purchase aligns with our long-term strategic business plan for property development and investment.”
Nicky Finnieston, investment director with Belfast-based Lisney, who handled the sale, said there has been a growing interest in the office rental market in the city, with the total rental take-up in the first quarter of this year increasing to 270,000sq ft.
“We’ve also seen prime office rents move from £12.50 per sq ft to over £21.50 over recent years and there are a number of office schemes planned where quoting rents will be upwards of £23 per sq ft.
“We have seen investment volumes increase from £26 million in the first half of 2017 to approximately £70 million in the first half of this year,” he added.