Billionaire property tycoon Simon Halabi has reportedly defaulted on £1.15 billion of loans on his London property portfolio. Prices for commercial property in the capital have fallen by around 40 percent in the last two years, and the portfolio that was once worth approaching £2 billion has recently been valued at £929 million. This breaches a loan-to-value agreement, which requires a further injection of capital within the ‘grace’ period to avoid a complicated sale and/or restructuring of debt.
Analysts have suggested that Halabi’s default is just one of many likely in the coming months; defaults on commercial property have already risen eight-fold since last year. The Syrian-born entrepreneur’s assets currently include JP Morgan’s head offices and the Aviva tower, as well as the Rothschild family home in Buckinghamshire. He has already sold his stake in the Shard of Glass tower at London Bridge.