Hammerson plc has exchanged contracts for the sale of its freehold interest in Parc Fforestfach Retail Park, Swansea, to Henderson Global Investors. The net cash proceeds will be £88.2 million after costs and it is anticipated that completion will take place at the beginning of August. Parc Fforestfach had a book value of £73.1 million and annual passing rents of £3.5 million as at 31 December 2003.
The acquisition of Parc Fforestfach in August 2002, for £58 million, represented Hammerson’s first investment in the retail park sector. At the time of purchase, the scheme was around 60% let. Hammerson successfully completed the letting programme, creating a strong tenant mix. The principal tenants at the 12,600 m² (136,000 ft²) scheme include, Argos, JJB Sports, Next, Borders and Marks & Spencer.
John Richards, Chief Executive of Hammerson said: “The sale of this property is in line with Hammerson’s policy of recycling capital and brings to over £300 million the amount raised from disposals this year. We have again seen exceptionally strong demand from investors for prime retail park assets, which was reflected both in the number and quality of bids received for the property.
The proceeds will be used to fund the group’s current development programme, which includes Cyfarthfa Retail Park, Merthyr Tydfil, where construction work started on site in February this year, and St Oswald’s Retail Park, Gloucester, where work is scheduled to begin shortly.
Our entry into the retail parks market at the end of 2002 has proved to be very successful and the portfolio continues to offer excellent growth prospects.”
Hammerson was represented by Harvey Spack Field. The purchaser was represented by Morgan Williams.