Andrew Jones, chief executive of LondonMetric

LondonMetric acquires Royal Mail distribution centre for GBP36m

LondonMetric Property has exchanged on the acquisition of the Royal Mail Distribution Centre in Daventry and the disposal of Congleton Retail Park in Congleton.

In an off-market deal, LondonMetric has exchanged on the acquisition of Royal Mail’s main distribution centre at Daventry International Rail Freight Terminal (DIRFT) from Meghraj Properties for GBP36m, reflecting a net initial yield of 6.7 per cent.
 
The unit is let at a rental of GBP2.5m per annum with annual RPI-linked uplifts, capped at three per cent, and an unexpired lease term of 9.7 years. The purchase will be funded from existing resources.
 
The 272,600 sq ft distribution centre is situated adjacent to the M1 motorway and is strategically located at DIRFT in Northamptonshire, one of the UK’s primary distribution locations.
 
Separately, LondonMetric has exchanged on the sale of Congleton Retail Park, Congleton, for GBP16.39m to Lothbury Investment Management, reflecting a net initial yield of 5.85 per cent. The retail park comprises 64,500 sq ft and is let to tenants including M&S Simply Food, Brantano, Laura Ashley, Carphone Warehouse and Boots with a WAULT of 7.0 years. It was acquired in June 2011 for GBP14.9m.  Completion is expected later today.
 
Following these transactions, LondonMetric’s portfolio totals GBP1,073m, with a WAULT of 12.7 years and 99.4 per cent occupancy. The distribution portfolio now totals GBP249m, representing 23 per cent of the enlarged group’s portfolio.
 
Andrew Jones (pictured), chief executive of LondonMetric, says: “The Royal Mail distribution centre represents an attractive off-market acquisition that is in line with our strategy of increasing our ownership of key distribution assets that will continue to benefit from the growth in online retail spending. This is a strategic asset for both the Royal Mail and its customers, with both Asos and Amazon accounting for over 10 per cent of daily throughput.”
 
Bushe Gower and CBRE advised LondonMetric on the Royal Mail Distribution Centre. Savills advised LondonMetric and Morgan Williams advised Lothbury on Congleton Retail Park.

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