Greycoat, the central London office specialist, today announced the appointment of three senior business leaders to a new Advisory Board, and the completion of two deals in the City, as part of its new focus on partnering with off-shore capital providers looking to invest in central London offices.
Greg Hartman, co-founder and former Managing Director of Rockpoint Group (one of the largest US real estate private equity funds) has been appointed to the Advisory Board as a senior Executive Director. Greg will bring a wealth of experience to Greycoat and will work closely with the existing leadership team on developing the business’ new strategy. He will be joined on the Advisory Board by two new Non-Executive Directors: Gerard Versteegh, Chairman of Commercial Estates Group; and Godfrey Blott, Chairman of Pinnacle Regeneration Group.
As part of this shift in emphasis, Greycoat has also announced the completion of two major new deals in the City with two new capital providers:
• Procession House at 55 Ludgate Hill with Cheyne Capital; and
• Woolgate Exchange at 25 Basinghall St with TPG and Ivanhoe Cambridge.
Greycoat worked on the purchase of 105,000 ft² (approx. 9,750 m² City office building, Procession House, alongside co-investor Cheyne Capital, for £62.5 million (approx. €74.1 million). Tenants include Goldman Sachs, Waterstones and Starbucks, with a total rent roll of £4,389,535 per annum. Greycoat sourced the property, led on the legal, accounting and real estate due diligence, and sourced and negotiated the debt from senior debt provider, Santander.
Greycoat also assisted Canadian fund Ivanhoe Cambridge and US private equity firm TPG on the purchase of the 340,000 ft² (approx. 31,590 m²) City office building, Woolgate Exchange. As well as assisting with the due diligence leading up to closing, Greycoat is currently working with the owners on the asset management of the building. The asset was acquired for £265 million (approx. €314.1 million) in January 2013 and is let to Portigon Services, at a rent of £16.7 million (approx. €19.8 million) per annum. MetLife was the senior debt provider.
This news follows the appointment of Chief Executive, Nick Millican, and real estate finance specialist Paul Johnston as a Director last year, and signals a strategic shift towards making Greycoat the Operating Partner of choice for capital providers investing in central London offices.
The new strategy sees Greycoat building long term relationships with a small number of major capital providers to make investments in direct assets and debt secured on high quality London property with repositioning potential. Greycoat will look to match assets with those aspirations and characteristics and will co-invest where required.
Nick Millican, Chief Executive of Greycoat, said: “This strategic change in emphasis of our business and the new faces we have added to the team at every level to compliment that strategy are a reflection of the change in dynamics in the central London office market. This is a market dominated by off-shore investors looking to invest on an attractive risk adjusted return basis in one of the largest and deepest CRE markets in the world.
“We are confident that Greycoat’s mix of financial, structuring and core bricks and mortar skills will allow us to identify and ultimately deliver new and attractive investment opportunities in London for significant capital providers.”
Peter Thornton, Chairman of Greycoat, said: “We are delighted that Greg Hartman and other major industry figures, like Gerard and Godfrey, have joined the Greycoat Board. The new Advisory Board members will supplement Greycoat’s 35 years of experience as a leading central London developer and asset manager and we are looking forward to working with them on a number of new exciting projects and transactions.”
Greycoat has existing mandates for the asset management and development management of approximately 1.5 million ft² (approx. 139,354 m²) of central London property. Greycoat’s asset management portfolio includes the Tower 42 Estate, EC2 (formerly the Nat West Tower and surrounding estate), 101 New Cavendish Street, W1 and the Business Centre at 30 Crown Place, EC2. Development management mandates include Wellington House, WC2, Tower House Hotel, EC3, and both 33 King William Street EC4 and 120 Fenchurch Street EC3.