Foreign investors own over half of Square Mile office buildings


A recent study, carried out by Development Securities, has revealed that the majority of city offices in London are under foreign ownership.

The study, entitled ‘Who Owns the City’, has displayed a huge growth in the amount of foreign investors acquiring office space in the capital during the past 30 years – having grown from eight per cent in 1980 to 52 per cent now.

Despite the ongoing economic downturn, as a result of this trend London has now become the most attractive city in the world for inward office investment.

Foreign investors are typically perceived to focus primarily on the City office space that is considered to be of a much higher standard – offering a high return.

The study consolidates this train of thought, with the average purchase price paid by a foreign investor – between 2008 and 2011 – standing at £91 million. This is compared with the £27 million expended by UK investors.

Meanwhile, the Development Securities report displayed that specialist real estate investors have increased their share of London office space by 10 per cent in the last six years – from 35 per cent in 2005 to 45 per cent.

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