Fri, 02 Sep 2022 | ADMINISTRATION
Aberdeen’s Bon Accord shopping centre will be put up for sale, after its owners fell into administration. The Guernsey-based owners – Aberdeen Retail 1 Limited and Aberdeen Retail 2 Limited – were placed into administration after the shopping centre encountered “unsustainable cash flow problems”.
The business has suffered as a result of the ongoing impact of COVID-19, growing retail competition and rising operational costs. Azets partners James Fennessey, Blair Milne, Colin Haig and Matthew Richards have been appointed as joint administrators.
The joint administrators confirmed that the Bon Accord and its operating companies will continue to trade while a buyer is sought for the centre and its assets. James Fennessey commented that the sale offered a "very strong brand name and awareness" and that the joint administrators were “keen to try and find a buyer promptly”.
Built in 1990, the Bon Accord shopping centre extends to two main buildings on Aberdeen’s George Street and Union Street. The centre holds 72 retail units across 460,000 sq ft and three floors, with two owner-operated car parks on the centre’s north and south sides providing 1,400 car parking spaces.
Period buildings located on George Street, Gallowgate, Loch Street and Upper Kirkgate, provide an additional 90,000 sq ft of retail and ancillary space, as well as 6,300 sq ft of office space. Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, the centre’s average annual footfall was 15 million visitors.
Azets said: “A diverse range of retail, hospitality and business tenants are based in the Bon Accord shopping centre and include a wide range of national high street retailers, specialist shops, restaurants, cafés and administrative businesses."
Azets restructuring partner and joint administrator James Fennessey added: “The Bon Accord Shopping Centre and the St Nicholas Centre, which merged with the Bon Accord in 2020, are long-established and retail centres with a very strong brand name and awareness across the north of Scotland.”
“They have consistently attracted and retained a wide range of quality retail tenants over the years, and regularly draw hundreds of thousands of visitors every year. The contribution of the Bon Accord to the economy of the north east is significant and the centre is as much a social hub and focal point for the city as it is a retail centre.”
“We will now quickly stabilise the trading position and wish to reassure tenants, shoppers and stakeholders that it is very much business as usual. Interested parties are asked to contact the selling agents, Cushman & Wakefield, as soon as possible as we are keen to try and find a buyer promptly.”
Read more about the impact of COVID-19 on the retail commercial property market.
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