Corestate Capital, the Frankfurt-based real estate fund manager, has made its first acquisition in the UK, buying the Royal Liver Building in Liverpool.
The firm is understood to have paid £48 million ($60 million; €56 million) for the office building. The seller was the Royal London Mutual Insurance Society. Neither side of the deal confirmed the sale’s particulars, although PERE understands the deal was capitalised via a joint venture arrangement between Corestate and another private international investor.
The deal is significant because, while Corestate has a longstanding reputation for being among the most active European real estate investment management firms, with approximately €16 billion of assets under management across 26 offices, it has yet not ventured into the region’s key market of the UK.
The firm classified the building as a core property, although Thomas Landschreiber, the firm’s chief investment officer, pledged in an announcement on the purchase that it would “invest substantial funds in order to preserve and strengthen” the property over time. He said: “As the new owner and custodian of this iconic building, we appreciate its heritage and the importance to the people of Liverpool. This investment reflects our expertise in acquiring core premium quality assets.”
The property already has gone under an extensive refurbishment in 2008 to ensure its space was sufficiently modern to house tenants including BESTINVEST, HSBC, Mott MacDonald, Pershing, Princess Limited and Universities Superannuation Scheme.
Stephanie Hacking, fund manager at Royal London Asset Management, added: “It has been a huge honour to be involved in the sale of the Royal Liver Building. It is a unique property with a tremendous history and prestige. We were delighted to have received such considerable interest in the asset and delighted to have concluded the sale to Corestate who will no doubt be proud owners going forward.”