The growing pattern of overseas investor interest in London’s depressed commercial property market was once again confirmed by news that HSBC is close to establishing terms for a £800 million sale-and-leaseback deal of its headquarters building at 8, Canada Square, on London’s Canary Wharf.
Two groups, one South Korean and one Malaysian, are thought to be interested.
The skyscraper, which is home to around 8,000 staff, is 200m tall, making it the joint second tallest building in the country (with Citigroup’s HQ). Its 42 floors comprise a total of more than 1 million square feet of office space.
In 2007, at the height of the property boom, HSBC sold the tower to Metravacesa for £1.1 billion. When the bank bought the building back from the struggling Spanish real estate group at the end of 2008, Metrovacesa realised a loss of £250 million.