4th June (Issue 450)

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.



Cork US-based investor Varde Partners has agreed an off-market deal to sell Blackpool Shopping Centre at approx. €49.5m (57% discount to the purchase price of €115m) to Lugus Capital and Patron Capital. Currently, The Irish Times understands the overall rent roll is closer to €6m. Located on Cork’s northside, Blackpool Shopping Centre comprises approx. 300,000 sq. ft of retail and retail park space, along with 108,513 sq. ft of offices and approx. 1,800 car-parking spaces. The Retail Park element is anchored by Woodies, Aldi, Boots and Maxi Zoo. The Irish Times, 29th May

Dublin Johnny Ronan has secured the backing of an international investor in his bid to win back a portfolio of prized assets. Landfair is backing Ronan’s bid to secure 11 properties which were placed under receivership last year, according to people familiar with the matter. Ronan is believed to be one of a small number of prospective bidders seeking to purchase all 11 properties as a single lot. The portfolio has been brought to market in recent weeks by joint agents JLL and Cushman & Wakefield at an overall guide price of €150m, under the instruction of Grant Thornton as receivers. The Business Post, 2nd June



Merrion Road, Dublin 4 The HSE has paid just more than €50m for Starwood’s remaining interests at Elmpark Green, a vast office and residential scheme developed in 2007 at a cost of €550m. The price paid represents a significant discount on the €190m Starwood paid in 2016 to acquire the current portfolio and two other assets which it later sold. The most significant of the properties acquired by the HSE is the Seamark building, which extends to 184,000 sq. ft. The other remaining assets include the 91,000 sq. ft Vista Building, which is leased to Novartis, producing an annual income of €1.8m, and six ancillary commercial units extending to a combined 44,000 sq. ft. The Irish Times, 31st May

North Docklands, Dublin Initial bids for the North Dock office scheme have fallen short of the €130m being sought by CBRE on behalf of receivers. Senior lender, Pimco, is owed €120m. The Irish Times has learned that first-round offers for the property have come in at between €60m and €95m. North Dock extends to 202,000 sq. ft in total. Tenants at the scheme include Gilead Sciences, Interactive Brokers and Blueface. Oaktree has a 60% equity stake in North Dock while Nama holds the remaining 40%. The Irish Times, 29th May

Cherrywood, South Dublin APC and VLE Therapeutics, two Irish-owned drug-development companies, have signed a long-term lease with DLR Properties, a company wholly owned by Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown Co Council, for a new 60,000 sq. ft building to facilitate the delivery of their planned 130,000 sq. ft Medicine Accelerator campus. APC already occupies more than 60,000 sq. ft in Building 11 at Cherrywood. The rental level has not been disclosed. The Irish Times, 29th May



Aungier Street, Dublin 2 Having failed to secure a buyer at either its original or reduced guide prices of €2.5m and €2m, The Lucky Duck pub on Dublin’s Aungier Street looks set to be acquired for an undisclosed sum by an existing private investor in developer Paddy McKillen jnr and Matt Ryan’s business empire. Oakmount acquired The Lucky Duck for its part for €831k in 2017 and engaged in an extensive refurbishment of the property in advance of its opening for business in late 2018. The Irish Times, 29th May

Merrion Row, Dublin 2 Emerald Investment is believed to be in talks to buy Foley’s bar on Merrion Row. According to market sources, the pub is worth approx. €6m. The pub was bought from receivers BDO in 2014 for €3.3m and is owned by John McEnaney. The Sunday Times, 2nd June



Goatstown, Dublin 14 WKN Real Estate Advisors is guiding €3.5m for the Cedar House Nursing Home at Mount Anville Park in Goatstown. The facility, which operated until its closure in December 2023, is being offered to the market on behalf of the Society of the Sacred Heart, Irish-Scottish Province, with the benefit of immediate vacant possession. The subject property extends to a total area of 18,245 sq. ft and sits on a site of 3 acres. It is single storey with capacity for 24 residents in individual ensuite bedrooms. Planning permission for an additional 28 rooms expired in 2022. The Irish Times, 29th May



Baldoyle, North Dublin The LDA has begun talks with Richmond Homes, a subsidiary of Avestus Capital Partners, in relation to its 125-acre landbank in Baldoyle. Formerly known as the Coast, the land has already undergone construction for approx. 100 homes with a potential for more than 1,900 homes. Richmond Homes acquired the land, also known as Project Shoreline and zoned for both residential and open space, for a reported €36m to €38m in 2019. The site, marketed by Savills, had been placed on the market in June that year by receiver Mazars with an asking price of €42m. The Sunday Times, 2nd June

Stillorgan, South Dublin Bob Etchingham and John Martin, the owners of the Stillorgan Orchard gastro pub, plan to demolish the 100 year old thatch-roof pub and replace it with 41 apartments. The proposed development will comprise two apartment blocks, including a six-storey block containing 33 apartment units at the front, and a four-storey block with the remaining eight homes at the rear. The building at the front, Block A, will also have a restaurant/retail unit at ground floor/street level. Etchingham, a director of Belgrave Capital Ireland, applied for planning permission for the works a week ago. The Business Post, 31st May

Sherry Fitzgerald Report The total value of development land that transacted in the GDA and three regional centres of Cork, Galway and Limerick totalled €204m for the first quarter of 2024, according to the latest report on the development land market from Sherry FitzGerald. While considerably greater than the same period in 2023, this largely reflects a single transaction: the sale of the former Jurys Hotel site in Ballsbridge. This 4.23-acre site was acquired by the US embassy for €152m. Excluding this transaction, the value of turnover was €52m which was the lowest level recorded since the second quarter of 2020 and well below the long-term average. The Irish Independent, 30th May

Cork Savills is guiding €4.25m+ for a 0.48 acre (€8.85m per acre) site at Anderson’s Quay, Clontarf Street and Lower Oliver Plunkett Street. The site is owned by OCP and it has a lapsed planning permission for 150,000 sq. ft of offices over ground floor retail. The Irish Examiner, 30th May



South Circular Road, Dublin 8 The company behind Griffith College is planning a €200m development of its campus in Dublin. Bellerophon is preparing to apply for planning permission to triple the size of the college campus at its main seven-acre site on the city’s South Circular Road. Latest accounts for the company show it had cash reserves of more than €37m. Accounts for Bellerophon show it had a turnover of €29.75m last year, up more than €2m on the year before. The company recorded a pre-tax profit of €2.73m, down from €3.6m. The Sunday Times, 2nd June

Property Portfolio Value The value of the Comer brothers’ Irish property portfolio surged past the €1.2bn mark last year, new financial filings have shown. A Business Post analysis has shown that they now collectively own more than €1.2bn-worth of property after the value of the portfolio rose by more than €56m during the 12-month period to the end of June 2023. Between 2017 and 2021, the value of the assets increased from €540.3m to €1.11bn as the property market continued to recover from the impact of the financial crash. The Comer brothers built up the majority of their portfolio in the aftermath of the recession. The Business Post, 2nd June


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