Amid an uncertain future for the proposed major redevelopment of the area, UK Land plc has sold the Elephant & Castle shopping centre for £29 million.
The purchaser is Key Property Investment (Number Five) Limited, a joint venture company owned 50 percent by St Modwen Properties plc and 50 percent by Salhia Real Estate Company of Kuwait. The sale is subject to the approval of the shareholders of UK Land plc.
According to UK Land, the Elephant has over the years provided the company with an "improving stream of income". The Elephant and Castle Centre consists of approximately 90,000 sq. ft. of office space, approximately 140,000 sq. ft. of retail space and approximately 90,000 sq. ft. of leisure space situated on a 3.5 acre freehold site.
UK Land says that a sale at the price agreed of £29.25 million (the centre was valued at £24.99 million in 2001) represents an acceptable price "taking into account the uncertainties surrounding the proposed redevelopment" and the short term nature of the lease with the tenant of the office space.
Anthony Glossop, Deputy Chairman and Chief Executive of St. Modwen, commented: "We are delighted to have exchanged contracts to acquire the Elephant & Castle Shopping Centre. This will bring the number of shopping centres that we hold either outright or through joint ventures to fourteen of which six are in the Greater London area. All have been acquired with a view to their long-term regeneration either by refurbishment or redevelopment, whilst improving performance in the short-term, through a programme of active "hands-on" management.
"The Elephant & Castle offers similar opportunities to the earlier centres we have acquired. There is scope for short-term benefits through active management and there are undoubted prospects for longer-term more significant regeneration.
"We are aware of some of the wider regeneration issues that have been under consideration in Southwark and look forward to working with the Local Authority in improving the provision of
facilities for the local community."
• St Modwen plc