Octopus Property provides £31.3m acquisition facility for major West London permitted development


Mario Berti

BBS Capital, the leading debt advisor and asset manager, has arranged, on behalf of a private client, a £31.3 million facility with specialist property lender Octopus Property, for the acquisition of one of London’s largest ever permitted development deals by floor area.

The buyer has purchased a 170,320 sq ft office portfolio in Brentford, West London, from Columbia Threadneedle Investments, for £48.15 million. 140,248 sq ft of the portfolio has consent, under permitted development, for change of use into 268 studios and one and two bed residential apartments.

The portfolio includes New Horizons Court, a 140,248 sq ft office campus spread across four buildings, including Sky’s former HQ, as well as three additional office buildings known as The Courtyard Buildings, providing a further 30,072 sq ft of space. The area is popular with commuters due to its excellent local transport links and access into London.   Conversion of the properties is expected to begin immediately. BBS Capital arranged the acquisition facility with Octopus Property at 65% LTV.

Westley Richards, of BBS Capital commented:

“We had only two weeks to arrange this facility, and are delighted to have successfully enabled our client secure this exciting opportunity. Our extensive experience in property finance and long term relationship with Octopus ensured our client was in a position to close the transaction only a fortnight after our first approach to the lender. This deal takes our total loans financed with Octopus to over £100m in 2017 alone.”

Mario Berti, pictured, CEO of Octopus Property, added:

“This facility represents the largest of its kind we have done this year, reflecting both the robustness of market and our position as the first choice lender for real estate professionals seeking fast and flexible financing for a diverse range of residential and commercial projects.

“We have enjoyed a record year in 2017, with average transaction volumes up over 10% on last year. It is through deep and longstanding relationships with established firms such as BBS Capital that we have been able to achieve this. These types of deals can often seem complex, but having assembled a talented team and with access to a broad range of non-bank discretionary capital, we are able to deliver time and time again.”

2017 has been an exciting time for fast growing BBS Capital, having helped its clients finance over £1bn of property deals across multiple sectors in the past 12 months. One of its notable deals was arranging the acquisition finance for WeWork’s Fox Court building in Grays Inn Road that was acquired in March 2017 by a private client for in excess of £100m. The Mayfair based firm operates in the UK and Western Europe with an experienced and specialist team.

Savills acted for Columbia Threadneedle Investments and Finn & Co, a leading commercial property investment advisory practice established in 2009 by Mathew Finn, advised the buyer. Steve Clinning and Laura Brown of Howard Kennedy LLP, acted on behalf of Octopus Property.