British Land acquires 50% stake in Eden Walk Shopping Center (UK)

British Land has purchased a 50% stake in Eden Walk Shopping Center in Kingston-upon-Thames, South West London, from Universities Superannuation Scheme (USS) for £41.5 million (approx. €53.1 million), reflecting a net initial yield of 5.35%.

The acquisition forms another joint venture between British Land and USS, who will continue to hold the remaining 50% stake. British Land and USS are already joint venture partners developing the Whiteley Shopping Center in South Hampshire.

Eden Walk is a 276,000 ft² (approx. 25,640 m²) open shopping center in the center of Kingston. It has 22 shop units, three offices and a 697 space multi-storey car park. The center was built in 1968, extended in 1979 and refurbished in 2010, and is anchored by Marks & Spencer, Sainsbury's, Boots and BHS. British Land will take responsibility for the asset management of the shopping center with immediate effect.

Kingston, which is in the south west of London, has one of the strongest consumer catchment areas in the UK with 1.3 million people generating retailer demand significantly above the average. The town has a high proportion of young affluent residents and dominates its local area, and has a market share of 24.8% of available spend in its catchment area, representing total shopper expenditure of over £2 billion (approx. €2.5 billion).

As part of the transaction, British Land will act as development manager appraising opportunities to extend and enhance the center in liaison with other key stakeholders, including The Royal Borough of Kingston-upon-Thames.

Charles Maudsley, Head of Retail for British Land, said: "We are delighted to extend our successful relationship with USS and secure a key, strategic asset with extremely strong underlying fundamentals and significant development potential, increasing British Land's exposure to the Greater London market.

"Kingston's superb catchment and shopper profile offer huge potential and British Land has the ability, experience and the right strategy to deliver an exceptional world class town center development."

Graham Burnett, Head of Property for USS, said: "We are very pleased to be able to extend the successful relationship with British Land. Our combined skills will enable us to capitalize on the strength of the existing asset."

British Land and USS are developing the 300,000 ft² (approx. 27,870 m²) new build Whiteley Shopping Center in Hampshire which is already 76% pre-let/under offer and is due to open in spring 2013. The scheme will comprise over 50 units totaling 242,000 ft² (approx. 22,481 m²) of retail space, 58,000 ft² (approx. 5,388 m²) of restaurants, cafés and other facilities and 1,136 free car park spaces.

M&S, Next and Tesco will anchor the scheme with other pre-lets including H&M, Boots, JD Sports, Bank, Sports Direct, Frankie & Benny's and Starbucks.

CBRE acted for British Land and USS was represented by Jones Lang LaSalle and Morgan Williams.

Source: British Land

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