17th July (Issue 155)

Welcome to the Origin Capital Weekly Irish Property Review. This update is designed to provide you with a full recap of the latest property news from the media over the last seven days.



Project Lee: Nama has put a €330m portfolio of assets linked to the late Cork property developer, Owen O’Callaghan, up for sale in one of the agency’s last major loan sales. The loans, which have been code-named Project Lee, had been earmarked for sale previously by the agency. The portfolio consists of six loans secured on Irish real estate with a face value of €330m. It is thought that the portfolio is partially performing. The Sunday Business Post, 15th July

Project Beech: AIB is planning to move ahead with its next non-performing loan sale, Project Beech, with a sale expected before the end of the year. Project Beech is unlikely to include any debts secured on family homes, instead consisting primarily of SME debts and buy-to-let properties. Despite the recent sale of Project Redwood, AIB is still carrying bad debts of c. €8bn, down from c. €31bn in 2013. The Sunday Business Post 15th July



Heuston South Quarter: Eir is in advanced negotiations to sublet a substantial part of its Dublin headquarters at Heuston South Quarter (HSQ) to AIB. AIB has agreed a rent of €1.96m p.a. (€35 psf) for Block 2, which has a floor area of 56,000 sq. ft. Car parking spaces will cost an additional €2,500 p.a. per space. The HSQ head office was acquired earlier this year in an off-market deal by the parent firm of mobile phone operator Three for a figure of c. €176m. Eir’s lease of the block is due to run until 2033, giving the new owner a weighted average lease period of 15 years, with a rent review due this month expected to see rent increase from €9.3m to €10.9m. The Irish Times, 11th July

Dublin Office Market Update: A total of 1.76m sq. ft. of office space was taken up in Dublin in the first half of 2018, according to the latest figures from CBRE Ireland. Some 864,438 sq. ft. of this year’s office leasing transactions were signed in the Dublin market in the second quarter, almost matching the volume leased in the first three months. Forty-five individual lettings occurred in Dublin in Q2, with 21 of these transactions (38% of take-up) comprising lettings to Irish companies. Although US companies accounted for only 14 transactions, this accounted for 58% of take-up. There were five lettings to UK companies completed in Dublin in Q2 as Brexit-related mandates continue to boost take-up. The Irish Independent, 12th July

Dawson Street: Biotech start-up company Nuritas is relocating to Dublin’s Dawson Street, where it will occupy the Joshua House office block next to the Mansion House. The five-storey over-basement building is owned by Dublin City Council and has a net internal area of 16,000 sq. ft. The 20-year lease includes a break option in year 10. The Irish Times, 11th July



Dublin Suburb Sites: Agent Savills has brought two sites in the Dublin suburbs with planning permission for a combined 164 residential units to the market. Offers in excess of €13m (€4.6m per acre) are sought for a 2.79 acre site at Oatlands College in Mount Merrion with planning permission for 64 units (33 houses and 31 apartments). Savills are also seeking offers of €15m (€934k per acre) for a 16.06 acre site in Kinsaley, north Dublin, with planning permission for 100 residential units. Savills believe the sales are likely to attract significant national and international interest because of the pent-up demand for housing. The Irish Times, 11th July

Dublin Residential Investment Market: A recent report by Hooke & MacDonald claims that for the first time activity in the residential investment market in Dublin was larger than the office and retail sectors in the second quarter of 2018. However, while residential accounted for 42% of the investment market in the second quarter (followed by offices at 27%, retail at 24% and mixed-use at 7%), it was still behind offices over the first half of the year. The residential investment market has grown strongly since 2016, when the sector opened up on the back of a shortage of rental accommodation and rising population levels. It constituted just 6% of the Dublin investment market in 2016, rising to 17% in 2017 and now standing at 24% over the first six months of 2018.Transactions in the Dublin residential investment market amounted to €294m in the second quarter supported by eight large deals. The largest deal was Irish Life’s c. €120m purchase of 262 apartments at Fernbank in Churchtown, Dublin 14. The Irish Times, 11th July

Navan Site, Co. Meath: Glenveagh Properties have completed the acquisition of a 59-acre site zoned for a high-density residential development, shops and public amenities in Navan, Co. Meath. Glenveagh paid c. €9m (€152k per acre) for the site which is expected to accommodate c. 1,100 houses and a commercial element to include a supermarket, cafes, a primary school and a medical centre. Agent CBRE offered the same lands for sale in 2016 but did not attract a single buyer. The Irish Times, 11th July

Players Square Site, Dublin: Nama is poised to enter into a joint venture agreement with Glenveagh Properties to develop the 10acre former John Player cigarette site on the South Circular Road in Dublin 8. The lands back on to St Teresa’s Gardens, a dilapidated 1950s estate of flats, and any development of the Nama lands would be taken in conjunction with Dublin city council. A total of 1,200 homes, public and private, are expected to be accommodated with up to 20% of the total land expected to consist of open space. The Times, Irish Edition, 15th July

Student Accommodation, Maynooth: Cairn Homes, has received the go-ahead to build accommodation for c. 500 students in Kildare. The company received permission from An Bord Pleanála to develop 483 student accommodation beds, a crèche, a café, a gym and a retail unit in Maynooth near Maynooth University. This is to include 319 houses and just over 140 apartments. Permission for the scheme was granted in spite of several objections from local residents, who complained that local services were already under pressure because of the surge in population in the town over the past decade. The Times, Irish Edition, 16th July



Hard Rock Hotel, Dublin: Irish hospitality group Tifco is bringing the Hard Rock Hotel franchise to Dublin as part of a €30m development. Tifco plans to open an upscale 120-bedroom, four-star hotel under the Hard Rock brand in early 2020. Located on Lord Edward Street, opposite City Hall, the hotel will comprise two buildings – the red brick Exchange Buildings, which dates from 1912, and the adjacent Fashion House Building, which is being rebuilt and will provide the entrance and reception. A new glass link bridge will connect the properties. Tifco owns the buildings and will operate the hotel as a franchise from Hard Rock International. This will be the first Hard Rock hotel in Ireland although there has been a Hard Rock Cafe in Temple Bar since 2004. The restaurant recently reopened after an extensive refurbishment. The Irish Times, 17th July



18/19 College Green, Dublin: The Tesco Express-led building at 18/19 College Green has been sold for €4.65m (€460 psf) – more than €500,000 above the guide price. Tesco pays a rent of €62,000 (€15 psf) for 4,156 sq. ft. for ground and basement level. IT Solutions occupies 5,941 sq. ft. on the five upper floors at an annual rent of €160,000 (€27 psf). Both tenant and landlord have break options in 2022. The Irish Times, 10th July



Food Central Business Park: UK specialist chilled food distributor Oakland has completed a 27,416 sq. ft. warehouse on 4.66 acres in the Food Central Business Park at St Margaret’s near Dublin Airport. Planning and construction of this €4.5m refrigerated food facility was completed in 10 months and delivered on time and below budget. It will be used by Oakland to service retailers such as Dunnes Stores, Aldi, Tesco, BWG and Musgrave. Food Central includes 280 acres and is focused on the food and drinks industry given its proximity to the airport, M50 and Port Tunnel. Businesses already in the park include Keeling’s, Donnelly’s, HPP and Dixon employing over 1,200 people. The Irish Times, 10th July


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