£3 million loan for Belfast property deal

Thu, 28 Oct 2010 | COMMERCIAL PROPERTY

A £3 million loan has been granted to two businessmen to assist with their purchase of one of Belfast city centre's most important buildings.

Barclays Corporate has provided the loan to allow Edward and Patrick Simpson, to buy Blackstaff House in Great Victoria Street, which is currently leased to the BBC.

The Simpsons, who already own other commercial properties in the area including Benedicts Hotel, said that they were keen to diversify their investment portfolio through prime property investments.

The deal is one of the few locally funded commercial property transactions to take place this year. It is expected that there will not be a change of use in the property and that the BBC will remain as long-term tenants.

Gavin Campbell, relationship director at Barclays Corporate, said it showed the bank's attitude to quality transactions. “It is a good example of the type of strategic and innovative transactions that are possible despite difficult market conditions,” said Campbell.

Sean Lavery of business advisors BDO, who were also involved in the deal, said that the transaction proved there were people 'ready to move' when a suitable property became available.

“The economy has been through tough times recently but this transaction is a demonstration of the confidence that still exists in the market for prime real estate deals,” he said.


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