Harworth acquires Saturn Park in Merseyside for GBP26m

Harworth Group, a regenerator of land and property for development and investment, has acquired off-market Saturn Park (Saturn) in Knowsley, Merseyside, for GBP26 million plus acquisition costs.  

The acquisition is in line with Harworth’s strategy to grow its predominantly industrial investment portfolio through the acquisition of high yielding properties with inherent value and growth potential.

Situated on a 35.2 acre site, Saturn Park comprises c416,000 sq ft of modern warehouse space across three units with ancillary offices, plus c13.1 acres of open storage land, which together generate a passing rent of GBP2.14 million per annum with a WAULT to expiry of 5.25 years. This reflects a Net Initial Yield of c7.7 per cent and a reversionary yield of c9.0 per cent.  The value of the gross assets subject to the transaction is GBP26 million and the acquisition will be funded through existing financial resources.

Located adjacent to Junction 4 of the M57, Saturn Park is conveniently positioned for access to The Port of Liverpool and the M58, M62 and M6 motorways. The site’s warehouse space is let to two tenants including Singleton Trading, a specialist importer and distributor of toys and goods to the North West, which occupies two units totalling c317,600 sq ft. The third c77,000 sq ft unit is let to Relonchem, an independent pharmaceutical company. Four tenants occupy the majority of the open storage land across five leases, generating an annual passing rent of cGBP628,000, whilst c10,500 sq ft of the 22,000 sq ft of office space is let to the NHS.

Harworth will use its significant asset management experience to drive further value at Saturn, including refurbishment works and enhanced marketing of the remaining vacant office space and land, whilst also exploring the potential for further development on the 4.25 acres of currently vacant land on the site.

Harworth’s existing investment portfolio generates GBP17.2 million of income per annum (as at 30 June 2020), making a considerable contribution to the Group’s profits and value gains whilst covering the company’s overheads.  In March 2020, Harworth appointed Richard Bousfield as Head of Income to boost its in-house asset management capabilities as it seeks to maximise capital values and rental income across the portfolio.  He is also responsible for identifying and acquiring additional high-yielding investments with asset management potential, including the opportunity for further development.

Lynda Shillaw, Chief Executive of Harworth, says: “This off-market transaction is an excellent use of our significant financial headroom to further improve the resilience and depth of our investment portfolio, whilst also providing clear asset management opportunities to generate future value gains. The acquisition also underlines our ongoing commitment to invest in our core regions and given the obvious synergies to the Port of Liverpool, it directly supports Government efforts to rebalance the UK economy.”

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