Matheson signs new lease on Dublin docklands HQ
Deal with Irish Life for Riverside IV may allow for upward-downward rent reviews
Irish law firm, Matheson, has signed a new 12-year lease for its headquarters at Sir John Rogerson’s Quay in Dublin’s south docklands.
Matheson’s decision to enter into a new lease and not to exercise a break option on the building will be seen as providing a significant boost to the Dublin office market, and may provide some indication of the demand for offices in the post Covid-19 world. The firm’s original 25-year agreement ran from 2007and provided for a break option in year 15, which would have allowed Matheson to surrender its lease on the property with minimal or no penalty in 2022.
A spokesman for Irish Life declined to comment when asked by The Irish Times if Matheson’s agreement now of a new 12-year lease on Riverside IV had effectively restructured the parties’ existing arrangement to remove the provision for upward-only rent reviews. Under legislation enacted in 2009, upward-only rent reviews were banned for all leases created after February 28th, 2010. With a new lease in place, Matheson is now in a position to seek a reduction from Irish Life of its rent should market rents have fallen at the time of its next review.
Developed originally by Sean Dunne, Riverside IV is a seven-storey over basement building comprising 12,355sq m (133,000sq ft) of office space. The developer sold the property in 2006 in part exchange for the Irish Life-owned Hume House next to his extensive former Jurys hotel site in Ballsbridge. Riverside IV was valued at the time at €170 million while the 7,432sq m (80,000sq ft) Hume House had a sale price of €130 million.
In 2009, and in the depths of the financial crisis, Irish Life offered a 50 per cent stake in Riverside IV to the market at a guide price of €50 million. But while a willing Irish purchaser emerged, the company ultimately decided not to sell, citing the emergence the following year of an improving investment climate.
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