Google completes purchase of Treasury Building for €120m

Acquisition gives US tech giant capacity to grow Dublin-based workforce by 1,200

Google’s purchase of the Treasury Building follows over two years of negotiations. Photograph: Eric Luke

Google’s purchase of the Treasury Building follows over two years of negotiations. Photograph: Eric Luke

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Google looks set to grow its Dublin-based workforce even further following the completion this week of its €120 million purchase of the Treasury Building on Dublin’s Grand Canal Street.

The US-headquartered tech giant’s acquisition of the property follows more than two years of negotiations with its owners, developers Johnny Ronan, Paddy McKillen and Percy Nominees.

Google’s purchase of the Grand Canal Street property provides it with the capacity to grow its existing 8,000-strong Dublin-based workforce by up to 1,200.

The figure could yet increase by a further 2,000 workers should the company press ahead with a plan to rent all 202,000sq ft (18,766sq m ) at the Sorting Office, a seven-storey office block being developed in Dublin docklands by Pat Crean’s Marlet Property Group.

Google is understood to have been in negotiations in relation to the property for several months now.

Google’s purchase of the Treasury Building is in keeping with its preference for owning its own premises. In 2011 the company bought its European headquarters on Barrow Street and the nearby Montevetro building for €100 million and €99 million respectively. Both buildings were developed by Treasury Holdings, the company formerly led by Johnny Ronan and Richard Barrett.

More recently Google agreed a €300 million deal in 2018 to acquire the entire Bolands Quay scheme. Upon completion it will comprise 36,851sq m (396,660sq ft) of office, residential, retail and cultural space, and be capable of accommodating up to 2,500 workers.

Google’s employees are also based at the (8,965sq m/96,500sq ft) Grand Mill Quay building, the (4,738sq m/51,000sq ft) Velasco building on Grand Canal Street, and over several floors at businessman Denis O’Brien’s offices at One Grand Canal Quay.

The company also has offices in Block L at Freeman House in EastPoint Business Park, and at the Chase and Blackthorn buildings at Sandyford in south Dublin.

Significant return

The sale of the Treasury Building is understood to have delivered a significant return for Ronan, McKillen and Percy Nominees.

Ronan acquired the former Boland’s Bakery building originally in 1984 for just IR£400,000 (€508,000). Percy Nominees, an investment vehicle controlled by Davy, bought its one-third stake in the property when Ambiorix, a company controlled by Ronan; Paddy McKillen’s son Paddy jnr; and Mr McKillen’s co-director Liam Cunningham, began redeveloping it in 1989.

Mr Ronan and Mr McKillen’s company retained a combined 66.67per cent interest in the Treasury Building, while Percy Nominees owned the remaining 33.33 per cent share.