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Landsec takes control of Bluewater after growing stake in £120 million deal
25 June 2024

Commercial property giant Land Securities (Landsec) has taken control of Kent’s Bluewater shopping centre, after striking a £120 million deal to increase its stake.

The FTSE 100 firm told shareholders on Tuesday it has acquired a further 17.5% stake in Bluewater from Singapore’s GIC.

The move has increased Landsec's ownership of the retail destination near Dartford to 66.25%.

It therefore values the shopping centre site at about £686 million, reflecting a valuation similar to when Landsec last upped its stake in 2021, but well below the £2.2 billion Bluewater was valued at in 2014.

Landsec expects the deal will increase its net rental income by £10.3 million a year, based on its income from the site over the past year.

Bluewater, which covers over 240 acres and includes more than 300, shops, restaurants and entertainment venues, was launched in 1999.

Landsec said the fresh deal is part of a plan to increase investment in major retail destinations, despite recent challenges in the sector and property valuations.

Its strategy saw Landsec sell its entire hotel portfolio for about £400 million to Ares management earlier this year.

Bruce Findlay, Managing Director Retail at Landsec, said: "This transaction underscores our ability to continue to create value through prime investments in scarce, major retail destinations with attractive return profiles.

"Bluewater is one of the UK’s top retail destinations and a key part of our strategy to further build our relationships with key brands."

Shares in Landsec were down 0.1% to 629p on Tuesday.

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