AXA Investment Managers – Real Assets a global leader in real asset investments and the leading real estate portfolio and asset manager in Europe, announces that, on behalf of clients, it has agreed to the sale of Ropemaker Place, a prime office building in the City of London, to a subsidiary of Ho Bee Land, the Singaporean listed company, for £650m. AXA IM – Real Assets acquired Ropemaker place in 2013 on behalf of a joint venture comprising one European and two Asian investors.
Ropemaker Place, at 25 Ropemaker Street, EC2, was developed in 2009 to an exceptionally high standard and offers 571,000 sq ft of Grade A office accommodation in addition to ground floor retail and ancillary space. The 21 storey, 602,000 sq ft building is 96% let to a strong line-up of investment grade tenants, providing a weighted average lease term of 10.5 years to expiry. The asset has a BREEAM Excellent sustainability rating and was the first building in the City of London to achieve a LEED Platinum pre-certification for sustainability2.
AXA IM Real Assets led an investor advisory team which included JLL.
Huw Stephens, head of UK transactions at AXA IM – Real Assets, commented: “We invested on behalf of clients in Ropemaker Place in 2013 in anticipation of a recovery in investment and leasing activity in the City of London post the global financial crisis. Having now completed our business plan for this asset, we have made the decision to exit the investment on behalf of our clients, by selling it to Ho Bee Land who will continue to benefit from its prime location in the heart of the City of London, which will be further enhanced by the opening of the Elizabeth Crossrail line later this year, its resilient income stream and reputation as a high quality office scheme.
“This transaction is a clear demonstration of AXA IM – Real Assets’ ability to bring together clubs of institutional investors, source high quality and well timed investments, completing an agreed business plan and subsequently executing the disposal. The City of London, as one of the leading global centres for international business and one of the world’s most transparent and liquid real estate markets, remains a key target market for us and one where we will continue to look for further opportunities on behalf of our clients.”