Mirae takes £250m shot at Cannon Bridge House

By Paul Norman - Wednesday, March 14, 2018 9:00

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South Korean investor Mirae Asset Management has gone under offer to buy Cannon Bridge House in the City of London from Blackstone for around £250m, CoStar News understands.

Mirae has agreed a deal to buy the building after it was relaunched for sale at the start of the year. Blackstone first instructed Savills and HFF last September to sell the 283,000 sq ft prime office development at 25 Dowgate Hill, EC4.

The deal is the second property in London Mirae has entered into advanced discussions to buy in the last six months. Last October, Mirae fronted a deal for South Korean conglomerate Dongbu Group to buy Tower Bridge House in the City fringe for £205m, before withdrawing from the acquisition a month after the resignation of Dongbu’s chairman over allegations that he sexually harassed his secretary.

Although often featuring in deals as an asset manager, Mirae has the firepower to buy big ticket assets in its own right. It previously considered making a pre-emptive bid for British Land and GIC’s £1.1bn 5 Broadgate.  

In 2015, Blackstone secured the £170m purchase of Cannon Bridge House through the acquisition of the B-Loan underneath the securitised debt within the Hercules (Eclipse 2006-4) CMBS from Fortress Investment Group.

Blackstone bought the £27m B-Loan, secured by Cannon Bridge House, for circa £11m from Fortress, allowing Blackstone to repay the Canon Bridge Loan at par and take ownership of the office block. 

In 2016, Blackstone signed Deliveroo as the first tenant at the River Building, part of the Cannon Bridge House development. The online restaurant delivery company relocated from Fitzrovia and set up new UK headquarters on the first floor of the River Building, occupying 50,000 sq ft.

Blackstone has undertaken a major refurbishment of the River Building since acquiring the Cannon Bridge House development in early 2015.

Prior to the Deliveroo deal, Blackstone secured the leasing of 21,000 sq ft at Cannon Bridge House to Historic England, part of the Department for Culture Media and Sport. The government agency joined a range of companies already based in the office building, including Natixis, IG Group Holdings and Winterflood Securities.

Blackstone financed the purchase of Cannon Bridge House with a five-year £120m senior loan from BNP Paribas Corporate and Institutional Banking. The five-year facility reflected a circa 72% loan-to-cost (LTC), based on a purchase price of £170m.

Westbrook bought Cannon Bridge House in 2006 for £206m in a joint venture with Atlas Capital and Lehman Brothers’ private equity division, financed by a £180m whole loan extended by Barclays Capital. Barclays split the loan into a £156m senior loan, which was spun into the Hercules (Eclipse 2006-4) CMBS transaction, and a £24m junior loan.


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