Security fears prompt Man Utd to buy industrial estate

Rachael Tinniswood

Manchester United FC is in talks to buy a 26-acre industrial estate next to its Old Trafford stadium in a bid to protect its players, staff and fans from any potential terrorist attacks.

The football club is offering joint venture owners MAT Transport and Davis Turner £10.7m for the 65-year lease on the Manchester International Freight Terminal at Trafford Park, which is just 400 yards away from the club.

The deal would represent an 8.4% yield on the property, which is currently let to tenants including DHL on leases of up to 60 years, while Man Utd will add to its £300m property portfolio by becoming a commercial landlord at MIFT.

Although the acquisition could provide an opportunity to extend Old Trafford, Man Utd is believed to be buying the site solely to increase security at the club. MIFT already has its own security, but Man Utd wants to ensure it has full control of who is on the site at any given time.

DTZ is advising Manchester United; Cushman & Wakefield is acting for the MIFT owners.

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