AXA Real Estate acquires c. £300 million BNP PARIBAS's office development (UK)

AXA Real Estate Investment Managers, the leading real estate fund and asset manager in Europe with over €42 billion of assets under management, as at March 2012, acting on behalf of its client, announces that it has created a 50:50 joint venture partnership with a large third party international client, to forward commit to purchase a 398,000 ft² (approx. 36,974 m²) office development in King's Cross, London, from developer BNP Paribas Real Estate.


King's Cross Central development expects to deliver 8 million ft² of mixed-use space.

The scheme comprises an 11-story building providing c. 398,000 ft² of high quality grade-A office space, which is c. 55% pre-let to BNP Paribas' subsidiaries on a 15 year lease. The scheme also offers c. 13,000 ft² (approx. 1,207 m²) of retail and café space as well as storage facilities and accommodation for a fitness centre. Construction of the building, which will achieve a BREAAM Excellent sustainability rating, is expected to commence at the beginning of 2013, with delivery in Q4 2014.

The scheme forms part of the 67-acre King's Cross Central development which expects to deliver 8 million ft² (743,200 m²) of mixed-use space into this important Central London district and is the largest regeneration project in Europe. The scheme will benefit from its close proximity to the major transport hub of King's Cross and St. Pancras, providing easy access to six tube lines, national railways and the Eurostar.

BNP Paribas Real Estate will be letting agents.

Commenting on the acquisition, Anne Kavanagh, Global Head of Asset Management at AXA Real Estate, said: "This acquisition demonstrates our ability to find value in the competitive London market and confirms our ability to source investment opportunities around which we can establish joint ventures between our clients."

Huw Stephens, Head of UK Transactions at AXA Real Estate, added: "This is a high quality asset that is extremely well located in the very high profile King's Cross Central regeneration area, next to a transport hub with seamless links to London, the UK and Continental Europe. The fact that the scheme is being built to the highest standards of sustainability and is already 55% pre-let to a strong tenant over two years ahead of delivery makes this an even more compelling investment."

Source: FTI Consulting

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