INDUSTRY NEWS

Selfridges purchase £130m London office block claims new FT report

A new report has claimed department store retailer Selfridges has invested £130 million in an office block close to its flagship Oxford Street store.

Sources close to the matter told the Financial Times that following lengthy negotiations, the store had agreed to buy National House from the property fund management group Hermes in an off market deal.

Located nearby the department store retailers flagship store, the move would suggest the firm is looking to expand is presence further in the key London retail district. Neither Selfridges nor Hermes wished to comment on the secretive deal however.

National House covers around 100,000 sq ft of prime London office space and is let to a number small business tenants. Until selling the property to Selfridges, Hermes had held the office block in a long-term investment fund.

Located at 103 Wigmore Street, it was originally built in 1968 before undergoing significant refurbishment in 1999.

This is not the first time that Selfridges has made plans to extend its Oxford Street store. In 2003 the retailer made plans for a £300m extension to the flagship store, which would have added an extra 100,000 sq ft of retail space as well as 300,000 sq ft of office space and also a hotel. However, the retailer withdrew the planning permission in 2004.

Aside from the retail side of the company, it is also responsible for managing the British Telecom Pension Scheme and also holds assets in office and leisure property – worth £5.8bn in total.

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