HSBC today struck a record for a single UK property by agreeing the £1.1bn (€1.6bn) sale and leaseback of its iconic headquarters in London’s Docklands.
The banking giant has sold the 210m high tower, known as 8 Canada Square, to Spanish real estate firm Metrovacesa. It will lease the Canary Wharf building back for up to 25 years, paying an annual rent of £43.5m (€63.6nm).
The tower, which cost £500m (€731.7m) to build, has been the global headquarters of the bank since 2002. The building is home to 8,000 HSBC staff, housing 1.1 million square foot of office space.
The bank has made the sale as part of plans to exploit the value of its property portfolio. HSBC has been headquartered in London since 1993 and first announced plans for the new head office building in 1998.
Last year the building was given an “excellent” rating for its energy efficient systems by the Building Research Establishment environmental standards authority.
HSBC chief operating officer David Hodgkinson said: “This is a good opportunity for HSBC to manage its property assets effectively. London is one of the great crossroads of the world and there is no better place for HSBC to be headquartered.”
The sale is expected to be completed by July, after which Metrovacesa will have a 998-year lease on the building. The company’s deputy chairman, Jesus Garcia de Ponga, described the purchase as a “compelling investment opportunity”.