Four Millbank

24 Jun 1999

OVERSEAS INVESTOR PURCHASES FOUR MILLBANK FOR £75 MILLION

OVERSEAS INVESTOR PURCHASES FOUR MILLBANK FOR £75 MILLION

Simmons & Simmons has today completed the purchase of Four Millbank on behalf of an unnamed overseas investor at a price of £75 million.

Four Millbank, formerly the headquarters of the Crown Agents, was refurbished at the end of the 1980s, and is now the nerve centre for political broadcasting by the BBC, ITN, BskyB and several overseas broadcasters. The building comprises offices, studios and processing facilities, together with a restaurant, sports club and several residential apartments.

This deal is the latest in a series of prime property investments made by similar overseas investors for which Simmons & Simmons has acted recently. It illustrates the continuing strength of the UK property market.

The Simmons & Simmons team was led by property partner Alan Butler and comprised Trevor Garrood, Karen Cruickshank, Michael Kan, Nicola Campbell, Dominic Bauers, Michael Willmott, Carol Shaw and Jo Dent (all from the firm's Property Department), plus partner Nick Cronkshaw and Hannah Meakin (Tax).

The purchaser was also advised by Healey & Baker. The vendors were advised by Nabarro Nathanson and by Catella.

ENDS Notes for editors:

1. Simmons & Simmons is worldclass law firm with offices in London, Paris, Brussels, Düsseldorf, Lisbon, Milan, Rome, Madrid, Abu Dhabi, Hong Kong, Shanghai and New York with over 1,400 staff worldwide. For further information on Simmons & Simmons please visit our website at www.simmons-simmons.com.

2. The Property Department comprises 16 partners plus 37 other lawyers, trainee solicitors and paralegals. As well as supporting the corporate areas of the firm, it has its own pure property and planning practice. Areas of expertise include property development, landlord and tenant work, commercial conveyancing, town and country planning and property finance. Property litigation is carried out by a dedicated team within the Litigation Department, headed by Carol Hewson. Support when appropriate is obtained from members of the Tax Department and Environmental Law Department.

3. Simmons & Simmons' Property Department has recently been involved in some of the UK's most significant property transactions. These include Despa's £140 million funding of Helical Bar's 260,000 sq ft office development at 25 Chiswell Street, London EC2, which has been pre-let to law firm Slaughter and May; the US$250 million forward purchase by Despa of the Diagonal Mar Shopping Centre in Barcelona, believed to be the largest retail shopping centre in Spain; Despa's purchase for £56 million of The Marlowes Shopping Centre in Hemel Hempstead and its sale for £70 million of Hill House, Little New Street, London EC4; MEPC's development of Northgate House and Kent House, London EC2 and the pre-let of the office space to Cazenove & Co; the joint venture between Railtrack; British Land for the development of approximately 700,000 sq ft of offices at Broadgate, London and Railtrack's sale to British Land of the income stream from five Phases at Broadgate for £140 million; Despa's acquisition of Colmore Gate from the Church Commissioners, Birmingham, for the sum of £47,015,000; and Despa's disposal of its John Lewis Headquarter building at 171 Victoria Street, London, SW1, for over £113 million