JV to advise firms on industrial assets 

Agency B8 Real Estate and investment consultancy Dow Schofield Watts have launched a specialist advisory service providing financial solutions to property owners at a time of record demand for logistics space. 

The service is intended to help industrial property owners, occupiers and private equity firms in the North to “access the value in their assets more strategically and effectively”, according to James Dow, founding partner of Dow Schofield Watts, which has offices in Cheshire, Leeds, London and Scotland. 

The partnership will offer advice on raising debt funding, releasing cash via sale and leaseback agreements, and reducing business costs by downsizing or relocating. 

Said Dow: “The unprecedented levels of demand for industrial space has created real balance sheet appreciation for many clients. The current industrial property market can rightly be regarded as a golden financing opportunity.” 

Occupier take-up of industrial and warehouse units larger than 90,000 sq ft in the North West rose by 43% last year to a record 5.2m sq ft, according to research produced by B8, while the total value of deals in the region in 2020 rose 37% year-on-year to £695m.

There is a “very real prospect” of shortages of industrial space in the months and years ahead because of this continued high demand.  

“The huge surge in demand has increased competition, but it does put existing owners and occupiers in a very good position,” said Simon Wood, director of B8 Real Estate.

“The industrial and distribution property market is at previously unseen heights. There are huge flows of overseas institutional money seeking opportunities in the sector and no signs of this abating.”

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