Aviva Investors has exchanged contracts on a €82.3m (£73.4m) industrial long income investment, believed to be one of the largest manufacturing property transactions within the UK in recent times. The 490,000ft² site at Prospero Ansty near Coventry will be let to global engineering business, Meggitt. The site is being developed by Manse Opus in a project funded by Aviva Investors’ Lime Property Fund as part of its continued investment into high quality, long income real estate in the UK.
The asset, which is currently under development, is subject to a 30-year lease let to Meggitt, in what will form a significant part of the manufacturer’s future operations in the region. Meggitt’s intention is not only for the facility to support innovation within its manufacturing business but also to offer accommodation for 1000 staff which is fit for the long-term future.
The site seeks to realise an engineering and manufacturing centre of excellence, purpose-built for aerospace thermal management technology. The site’s location is also well placed in the major Manufacturing Technology Centre (MTC) and has strong travel links. Aviva Investors believes the manufacturing property sector looks well placed to prosper from the influence of an increasingly globally trading Britain. Realest, the property advisory firm, advised on the formation and delivery of the transaction. Pinsent Masons LLP advised Aviva Investors.
Kris McPhail, Fund Manager at Aviva Investors, said: “We are very excited to be involved in this significant development in the manufacturing sector. The transaction provides our investors with sustainable, inflation-linked income, underpinned by a very strong tenant in a market with solid fundamentals and potential for growth. We look forward to sharing in the future success of the project."
Jonathan Jones, Group Property Director, Meggitt PLC said: “This was a complex acquisition with multiple stakeholders to manage, our timeline was tight and we had to adopt innovative ways to achieve a design-build and leaseback vehicle to meet our goals. With the intention of entering a 30-year lease, choosing the right funding partner for this £100m project was also fundamental to a successful outcome and in Aviva Investors, this proved the case. Kris McPhail of the Lime Property Fund and their lawyers, Pinsent Mason, worked tirelessly with the Meggitt team over the last eight months helping structure the deal that worked for everyone."
Richard Smith, Joint Managing Director, Opus Land said: “As Joint Development Partners with Manse, we were delighted to receive such a serious enquiry as this one from Meggitt, almost immediately upon the signing of our Promotion Agreement for Prospero Ansty and to follow that within such a short period of time with a committed deal to Meggitt funded by Aviva and the Lime Fund. This is obviously a brilliant start for Prospero which offers available space for occupiers seeking anywhere between 50,000ft² – 1million ft², principally for the manufacturing sector adjacent to the original Ansty Business Park whose occupiers include Fanuc, AVL Electronics, Sainsbury's, London Electric Vehicles (LEV) and particularly MTC, the now world-renowned R&D Centre principally involved in the aeronautical and automotive sector.”