Aberdeen buys 4 St Paul’s Square

Aberdeen Asset Management has bought the 107,000 sq ft 4 St Paul’s Square in Liverpool from English Cities Fund, for £18.7m.

English Cities Fund is a joint venture between Muse Developments, Legal & General and the Homes & Communities Agency.

The JV completed the development of 4 St Paul’s in 2011.

The building forms part of the wider St Paul’s Square development which includes two other offices, a residential block and multi-storey car park, all developed by ECf.

Current occupiers include Santander, Mercers, CBRE and GVA, although the building is around 40% vacant.

Phil Mayall, development director at Muse, said: “ECf is proud to have developed the final phase of St Paul’s Square. This is a high quality scheme and has established the area as the City’s prime CBD office and mixed use location. We wish Aberdeen well in their ownership.”

Robert Cass, head of UK property transactions at Aberdeen Asset Management, said: “The city continues to show strong growth and demand for high quality office accommodation with considerable office stock also being converted to other uses.

“ECf has created a first class development and a very attractive environment for modern occupiers at St Paul’s Square and we look forward to capitalising on the strong demand existing for space in the building.”

Aberdeen Asset Management was advised by Parkinsons and Worthington Owen; ECf was advised by GVA.

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Why is it that whenever a Liverpool office block is mentioned these days, my first thought is to ponder the likelihood of it ending up as studio apartments?

I’d hope that doesn’t apply to any of the office buildings around St Pauls, but let’s face it they form the one of the last mini-clusters left in the place.

Manchester’s net trolls can and do spout BTL rubbish about “demand”, but the true experts say conversions have gone way too far. What is the local government doing to inject life back into Liverpool’s commercial, beyond the sticking plasters of a few additional buildings on less than half the Pall Mall site?

By Mike

Difficult to say office demand is there though when a Grade A office in the prime business district is still only just over half let… Don’t think you need to fear that it’ll become apartments though, looks like an office through and through.

By Office half full

“Demand”, whether high or low, is just a temporary market movement. Arguably it may have been harmed rather than boosted by all the conversions going on.

The issue is why is the building only just over half full, and what is the local government doing about that on a fundamental, deep economic level.

By Mike

a brave move ,office demand is not strong in the City and this is likely to be empty for a long time .It shows how desperate the funds are for stock .

By sage

@Sage are you from Manchester by any chance

By Tim

In a few years big changes for Liverpool in regards to office space -Liverpool City Region is far better for quality living than other neighbouring cities and people want to live here -Liverpool just keeps getting better .

By Tim

Liverpool ONE proved that a step-change investment was possible in retail, we now urgently need the leadership and ambition to do the same in commercial. Demand for office space in Liverpool’s commercial business district was up 13% on 2015 and this has continued as there is just over 50,000 sq ft of vacant Grade A space available in the city centre. Office rents in central Liverpool must increase by at least 20%, from £21/sq ft to £25/sq ft, to encourage investors to replenish the stock of quality new space. The councils plans for the developments in the Knowledge quarter and on Pall Mall should go some way in rectifying this problem.

By Flan

Local government and other key people in the business community need to work to attract businesses to take up space in this building. This is such an impressive area and building and a great place to work. We just need to business to understand this and feel confident to move into the area. Fingers crossed the building will start filling up soon.

By BB

Great to see funds like Aberdeen investing in Liverpool – long may it continue.

As for the comment about it being vacant for a long time, as a tenant in the building I can tell you there are only 1 and a bit floors empty so I very much doubt that.

Great news for the market and City as a whole !!!

By John

To be fair it is a good building but it should be with the amount of tax payers money that has gone into it . Mercury Court had a similar effect some years ago of shifting the prime location and relocating tenants from outdated space .It is a positive story for the City but i just do not see where the rental growth will come from .

By sage

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