Launch of Scarborough Development Group (UK)

A new property development and investment group has been launched following the £37 million (approx. €40.8 mln.) acquisition of a portfolio of retail development sites, principally in the North-West. The sites have been acquired from the administrator of Modus by Scarborough Development Group, the McCabe family's latest property vehicle, which is presently looking to take advantage of retail opportunities. The independent property vehicle will initially focus on the food store sector which has proved to be a defensive market area throughout the recession.

The acquisition has been made with funding partners Investec Private Bank and aims to create more than 650,000 ft² (approx. 60,200 m²) of food store, mixed retail, parking and office space on eight sites, covering more than -60 acres- in North & South Wales, the North-West and Lincolnshire.

The investment value of the completed projects is anticipated to be in the order of £200 million. The developments are located in Rhyl, Stockport, Preston, Congleton, Boston, Glossop, Newport and Wigan.

In Rhyl, Congleton and Wigan, development plans are already at advanced stages:

Rhyl - 'Ocean Plaza'
A 16 acre site where SDG plan to develop a mixed use scheme including a 95,000 ft² food store, an 80 bed hotel, 20,000 ft² of offices, a stand alone leisure unit and 234 sea front apartments in a mixed use scheme including 20,000 ft² of commercial.

Congleton – Mill Street / Princess Street
A three acre site comprising a number of existing retail units fronting Mill Street at an upper level, together with other properties accessed from Princess Street. A planning application has been submitted to develop the site to provide a 58,200 ft² food store alongside six further retail units totaling 5,000 ft².

Wigan – Millgate
A 0.7 acre site which sits immediately next to a new 500 space multi storey car park and the recently developed Grand Arcade shopping centre. There are various proposals for the site including a residential tower and a mixed office/ budget hotel scheme.

At the remaining sites, the Company's development plans are still at early stages but preferences center around food store developments where the opportunity exists.

Stockport – Brighton Road
An 11 acre site which currently accommodates approximately 100,000 ft²
Preston – Blackpool Road
Boston- Rosegarth Street
A retail unit on 2 acres in the town center
Glossop – Wren Nest Road
Newport – The Cambrian Centre
An existing shopping center of approximately 55,000 ft² in the city center

Mark Jackson has been appointed Managing Director, and Simon McCabe as a Board Director.

Mark Jackson, Managing Director, commented: "Launching a development company in today's market is a bold move but a good move. SDG and our funding partners Investec are delighted to bring these projects forward at what we believe will prove to be an opportune time. We are a new and energetic company backed by great experience, and we are delighted to be one of the first companies to make a significant commitment to stepping back into development. The food store market is understandably proving to be one of the more robust in this recession, and is a great sector in which to be investing and in which to found our new business."

Paul Stevens of Investec Private Bank commented: "We are delighted to be funding partners to the new Scarborough Development Group. This is a great opportunity for us to be involved at the initial stages of a new and exciting development company, run by a very experienced management team. There are just a handful of banks willing to provide funding on development sites in the current climate and we look forward to identifying further high quality lending opportunities in the coming months."

Source: Tavistock

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