Exchange Quay set for £10m refurbishment following sale

Simon Donohue

An undisclosed American institution has acquired the Exchange Quay office development at Salford Quays.

Spanning six buildings, Exchange Quay provides 433,637 sq ft of office space. It will undergo a £10m refurbishment as part of the deal.

The value of the sale has not been disclosed but there has been speculation that the price paid is between £20m and £30m, far short of the £80m valuation placed on Exchange Quay before the property crash.

Exchange Quay was previously owned by a Channel Islands-based trust.

The deal was completed on behalf of the American institution by its advisor, Edinburgh-based Hunter Property Fund Management.

HPFM was represented by Matthews & Goodman in the deal, while Savills acted for the vendor.

The six office buildings at Exchange Quay range in size from 26,151 sq ft to 116,684 sq ft.

Existing tenants include Sage UK while recent deals with new occupiers include Kin-Tec Electronics, which will occupy 8,181 sq ft, and Future Electronics, which is leasing 4,000 sq ft.

Existing occupiers GAB Robins and CH Robinson have also recently expanded to occupy 10,000 sq ft and 6,785 sq ft respectively.

Mark Hunter, managing director of Hunter Property Fund Management, said: "Our brief was to source a project within the UK with immediate asset management opportunities and real potential to add value.

"As one of the country's most dynamic office markets, Greater Manchester was an obvious choice, as was Salford Quays, which has been greatly transformed by infrastructure and MediaCityUK into a destination in its own right.

"We identified that Exchange Quay occupies one of the most strategic locations in the region and, after our investment, it will offer some of the most flexible and attractive office accommodation in Greater Manchester.

"Our competitive terms, coupled with quoting rents in Salford Quays standing some 50% less than in Manchester City Centre, give us distinct advantage."

Roy Beckett at law firm Irwin Mitchell advised the vendor.

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