Morgan Stanley nears $366m China office sale

Morgan Stanley Real Estate Investing is close to agreeing the sale of The Exchange office building in Shanghai to Chinese developer SOHO China. The firm, which has invested in the city since 2003, hopes to conclude a sale by the end of the year.

Morgan Stanley Real Estate Investing, the real estate investment arm of US bank Morgan Stanley, is close to selling its The Exchange office building in Shanghai to Beijing-based developer SOHO China.

The firm is in advanced talks with the developer to sell the building with a completion date for the deal expected before the end of the year.

A sale would mark an entry to the Shanghai market for SOHO China, which was formed in 1995 by chairman Pan Shiyi and chief executive officer Zhang Xin. The developer has historically invested only in Beijing.

It is unclear at this stage how much Morgan Stanley would fetch for the office, on Shanghai’s Nan Jing Road, however a price of approximately 2.5 billion yuan ($366 million) has been quoted in a report by Reuters. The firm purchased the property for approximately 2 billion yuan in 2006.

Morgan Stanley would not comment on the matter.

The firm has been active in Shanghai since 2003 and has been very active in China both in terms of investment and fundraising of late. The Chinese sovereign wealth fund China Investment Corporation committed $800 million to its latest global real estate opportunity fund Morgan Stanley Real Estate Fund VII Global. The fund has raised more than $6 billion in equity in total.