Singapore's GIC buys 50 per cent stake in London office complex

Singapore's GIC buys 50 per cent stake in London office complex

SINGAPORE - One of Singapore's sovereign wealth funds confirmed Tuesday it had acquired a 50 per cent stake in a major City of London office complex from global investment giant Blackstone.

GIC Pte Ltd said in a statement the partial acquisition of the Broadgate complex, a cluster of 17 office buildings, shops and restaurants, includes a new 710,000 square feet (66,000-square-metre) office building which has been pre-let to Swiss banking behemoth UBS.

The remaining stake in the 30-acre(12-hectare) office complex as well as the upcoming 5 Broadgate building will be owned by property giant British Land.

GIC, previously known as the Government of Singapore Investment Corporation, did not reveal the value of the deal. The Straits Times estimated it to be worth more than £1.7 billion (US$2.79 billion).

GIC said the office complex, which has a total floor space of four million square feet, "is well positioned to capitalise on the improving demand for prime office space in London as the UK economy recovers and the City maintains its prominence as a global financial centre".

GIC, which manages more than $100 billion of Singapore's foreign reserves, said in August it was adopting a new investment approach which would give it the ability to take short-term risks in order to achieve better long-term gains.

GIC is one of two Singapore sovereign wealth funds, the other one being Temasek Holdings.

The net investment returns from GIC, the central bank, and Temasek account for about 15 per cent of the total government budget in Singapore.

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