Bruntwood SciTech has agreed a three-year, £185m funding deal, using £60m to support 400,000 sq ft of development at Circle Square, and £125m to refinance other assets including Alderley Park.
The money is a green loan, co-ordinated by Lloyds Bank, while Santander, NatWest, HSBC and Lloyds Bank each have 25% shares in the combined £185m facility.
The terms of the loan mean Bruntwood SciTech will secure a discount on its cost of funding if it achieves a BREEAM Excellent rating for the three offices being built on Manchester’s Oxford Road, expected for completion in 2021.
Bruntwood SciTech is a 50/50 joint venture between Bruntwood and Legal & General, while Circle Square is being delivered in a joint venture with Vita Group.
The remaining £125m will be used as an investment loan to refinance elements of Bruntwood SciTech’s portfolio, including Alderley Park in Cheshire, Manchester Science Park, Manchester Technology Centre and Platform, in Leeds.
There will also be a discount on the investment loan, should Bruntwood SciTech spend £3.5m in sustainability improvements across its estates, including in combined heat and power, storage batteries, and small-scale renewable energy. It has pledged to reduce the energy intensity of its portfolio by more than 10% over the lifetime of the loan.
Kate Lawlor, finance director, Bruntwood SciTech, said: “Our assets are powering the future of the UK’s knowledge economy, helping to create thriving innovation clusters, like Circle Square, and supporting new breakthroughs in bioscience and the tech industry. We’ve seen significant demand for our specialist workspaces and labs from start-ups and scale-ups to leading global companies.
“This new funding agreement gives us the platform to accelerate our growth sustainably, providing customers with access to facilities tailored to their specific needs that have minimal impact on our environment.”
Lloyds Bank Commercial Banking’s £1bn green lending initiative was first launched in 2016 and was followed in 2018 by the bank’s £2bn clean growth finance.
Squire Patton Boggs acted on behalf of the lenders, Addleshaw Goddard for Bruntwood SciTech with CBRE providing valuations.