6th February (Issue 132)

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.



Central Bank Dublin: A marketing campaign gets under way next month to attract tenants for the former Central Bank building on Dame Street in Dublin city centre. The newly named Central Plaza will provide 134,500 sq. ft. of fashion, food, beverage and office facilities. US property group Hines and Hong Kong-based Peterson Group, which bought the former bank facilities for €67m, plan to spend a further €100m upgrading the building to attract a range of big name traders. The changes under way will see the top floor of the old block converted into a two-level bar, restaurant and viewing area, to provide unrivalled views over the city centre. BNP Paribas Real Estate will handle all retail trading opportunities and Knight Frank have been engaged to handle the office lettings.  The Irish Times, 31st January

George’s Quay Dublin 2: Irish Life has landed a second tenant for its newly redeveloped waterfront office building on George’s Quay in Dublin 2. Having previously lined up US Company WeWork, Irish Life has agreed to let the penthouse level to CDB Aviation, a subsidiary of China Development Bank, which owns, leases and manages aircraft. The building which previously served as Ulster Bank’s headquarters and was recently renamed the 1GQ office complex, has been stripped out, modernised and extended at considerable expense. The front of the building has been renovated to accommodate a five-storey glazed extension, increasing the overall floor area by more than 21,000 sq. ft. to 131,333 sq. ft. The building is now one of only ten in Ireland to have achieved LEED Platinum certification. WeWork, which provides office space on flexible leases, agreed a rent of €57 psf for c. 50,000 sq. ft. on the ground and first floors, while CDB Aviation signed a new long-term lease on the penthouse level of c. 23,800 sq. ft. at €60 psf. Irish Life is not expected to have any difficulty in finding a tenant for the two remaining 27,000 sq. ft. of space. The Irish Times, 31st January

The Exchange Office Building: International law firm Walkers will double its Dublin office space when the firm moves to The Exchange office building at the IFSC. Walkers, who have been in Ireland since 2010, will occupy 19,178 sq. ft. on the penthouse floor of the five-storey building under a long-term lease at €50 psf. The Exchange, which fronts onto Mayor Street and is located beside George’s Dock Luas Station, was developed by the Cosgrave Group in conjunction with the IPUT pension fund. JLL advised the landlord while Bannon’s acted for the tenant on this transaction. JLL and Savills will market the remaining three floors (57,500 sq. ft.) which are available at €52.50 psf. The Sunday Business Post, 4th February

77 Sir John Rogerson’s Quay: Hibernia REIT has exchanged contracts to acquire 77 Sir John Rogerson’s Quay for €28.7m. The six storey office building totalling 34,400 sq. ft. is situated at the eastern end of Dublin’s South Docks. Hibernia is acquiring the building vacant and intends to spend €500k on refurbishment works, equating to €850 psf capital value. The REIT has agreed to let the entire building to a subsidiary of International Workplace Group (WG) on a 25-year lease with 15 years term certain. WG’s lease will commence in mid-2018 at an initial rent of €1.8m (€50 psf) and they will receive nine month’s rent free. The net yield for Hibernia will be 5.8pc after expiry of the rent free period, rising to 6.3pc following a fixed uplift in rent after year five. The Irish Independent, 1st February

Barrow Street Dublin: Property development group Jones Investments will spend c. €10m building a hi-tech enterprise centre on Barrow Street in Dublin. Work on the centre is expected to commence in June and likely to take c. 18 months. The project will involve the demolition of a warehouse at 15 Barrow Street, replacing it with the enterprise and innovation hub aimed at technology, media and telecoms tenants. Planning permission was granted in December for a four-storey over basement building with 35,000 sq. ft. in gross floor area. The industrial-style building will have space for about 250 workers, with shared work areas, meeting rooms and break-out spaces. Jones purchased the low-rise Barrow Street warehouse in 2016 for €2m and has engaged Savills to find a tenant for the building. The Sunday Times, 4th February



Hilton Dublin Airport Hotel: JLL has brought The Hilton Dublin Airport Hotel located on the Malahide Road at Northern Cross in Dublin 1, to the market guiding €22.5m. The hotel, with annual trading profits of more than €2m has been offered for sale on a long leasehold title with 475 years still to run at a nominal rent. The 166-bedroom hotel has been operating for nearly 12 years and as well as the strong demand for bedrooms, the hotel trades exceptionally well in the recently refurbished  bar and restaurant. The Irish Times, 31st January

No. 77 St. Stephen’s Green: CBRE are seeking offers in excess of €16m for a major hotel development opportunity in the former home of the Loreto nuns at No. 77 St. Stephen’s Green. The property has full planning permission for an 81-bedroom hotel. The planning permission provides for the conversion of the original building to provide eight suites, reception rooms, spa facilities and a restaurant and bar in the formal chapel. A new bedroom block will be constructed to the rear to provide 73-bedrooms and it is envisaged the hotel will operate in the four-star category. A feasibility study undertaken by the vendors indicates a possible office development with a gross internal area of 56,000 sq. ft., subject to the necessary planning permission being obtained. The Irish Independent, 1st February

McWilliam Park Hotel Claremorris: The four-star 103-bedroom McWilliam Park Hotel in Claremorris Co. Mayo has been sold by the agent JLL for €9m. The hotel which was jointly developed in 2006 by Claremorris Tourism and MOPB Developments at a cost of €20m, was the subject of an examinership in 2016. McWilliam Park has one of the largest concert hall venues in the west of Ireland with capacity for 800 guests. It also has an 18m swimming pool and full leisure centre facilities. The Irish Times, 31st January

The Sunday Business Post reports that the Thomas Roeggla controlled SCIF Hotels fund is the new owner of the McWilliams Park Hotel. It brings to nine the number of hotels that he now owns in Ireland, including the Farnham Estate in Cavan and Mount Wolsey in Carlow. His Irish investments have been valued at c. €80m. The Sunday Business Post, 4th February

Camden Court Hotel: The McEniff family, who own the Camden Court Hotel in Dublin city centre have announced plans to add 75 new bedrooms and four conference rooms to the property. The proposed addition of an eight-storey block in the courtyard of the hotel would increase the number of bedrooms to 322, making it one of the largest hotels in the city centre. The company that runs the four-star Camden Court had turnover of €12.5m in 2016 and made €3.5m profit before tax. The McEniff family own several other hotels, including the Grand Canal hotel in Dublin. The Sunday Times, 4th February

Gardiner Street Lower: A portfolio of hotel and guesthouse accommodation on Gardiner Street Lower in Dublin city centre has been sold for over €7.5m in an off-market transaction. CBRE’s hotel division brokered the sale of the Maple Hotel and adjoining Othello Guesthouse, the Glen Guesthouse and Avondale House on behalf of receivers KPMG. The Maple Hotel and adjoining Othello Guesthouse comprises two four-storey over basement Georgian buildings comprising 34-bedrooms. The Glen Guesthouse and Avondale House are similar Georgian buildings with 31-bedrooms each. The Irish Independent, 1st February



National Asset Management Agency: According to the agency’s accounts, NAMA lent €384m to borrowers for ongoing projects during the nine months to September 30th 2017. Its original remit allows them to lend additional funds to borrowers where it is likely to aid them in repaying their debts and delivering a return to the State. The State body is backing several projects in Dublin docklands strategic development zone which includes 22 hectares of sites along the quays on both sides of the river Liffey. At this stage, it and its borrowers are on track to build 1,700 homes and 3.6m sq. ft. of office space. The Irish Times, 31st January

AIB Social Housing Fund: AIB has announced plans to set aside €100m in a social housing development fund which will assist experienced developers deliver newly built stock to the larger Approved Housing Bodies (AHBs) in the State. AIB said that it will review the fund’s initial level of €100m pending demand. Under the terms of the fund, the bank will provide developers with an opportunity to raise an increased level of debt on more flexible terms than available for private schemes. The bank said that it is able to discount the value of the sale, providing 70% of its value as opposed to the more usual 60%-65% of costs available for private schemes, thus decreasing the developer equity required. The Irish Independent, 1st February



Proposed Industrial Park Baldonnell: The Newry-based Mac-group have been hired to develop the first phase of a €40m logistics and industrial park planned for Baldonnell in South Co. Dublin. The joint venture between UK-based property development company Mountpark, and Texas-headquartered USAA Real Estate, received planning permission last year. In total, the Baldonnell project will comprise three purpose-built high-bay logistics facilities, with the first phase, extending to about 120,000 sq. ft. expected to be completed in the fourth quarter of this year. Mountpark Logistics estimates that 120 people will be employed in the construction of the planned park, and up to 850 jobs are expected to be created by companies operating from the location. The Irish Times, 1st February

Manufacturing Plant Tipperary: A substantial manufacturing plant owned by cosmetics producer Coty Inc. at Nenagh, Co Tipperary, will be offered for sale on the international market. Colliers International has set the guide price at €3.4m, a fraction of the cost involved in developing the two large buildings with a total floor area of c. 220k sq. ft. Significant upgrades were made in the past five years to retain the plant’s status as a state-of-the-art manufacturing facility, including the provision of a new laboratory, reroofing of part of the facility, and a new staff canteen. A new waste water treatment plant was also installed, along with a new 4-tonne combination boiler. The plant stands on a site of 19.6 acres with all of it zoned for industrial use. The Irish Times, 31st January



North Earl Street Dublin: Agar Commercial Property Consultants is about to launch a marketing campaign for a high-profile retail building at 13 North Earl Street, Dublin 1. The recently refurbished premises will be brought to the market with vacant possession at €2 million or, alternatively, for rent at €100k p.a. The building was previously rented as a mobile phone outlet by Meteor at €145k p.a. It has an overall floor area of 2,669 sq. ft. including 764 sq. ft. at street level. Neighbouring traders include Sports Direct, Michael Guiney, Dunnes Stores and Peter Mark. The Irish Times, 31st January


If you have an article which you would like to have considered for inclusion in our next weekly report, please contact us at info@origincapital.ie

Origin Capital funds senior debt transactions in the CRE investment sector, typically in the €3m – €15m range. If you would like to discuss how Origin Capital can help with your funding requirements, please contact us on 01 662 9264.

Origin Capital is a wholly owned subsidiary of LeBruin, a leading provider of corporate finance and debt advisory solutions.