Champions League winner Chelsea Football Club will almost certainly fail in its bid to move its stadium to London landmark and Nama-owned Battersea Power Station, a source close to the sale process has revealed.
About 15 bidders including Chelsea — which is owned by Russian billionaire Roman Abramovich — submitted plans earlier this month to buy the protected 15-hectare site on the south bank of the River Thames.
The power station has been the subject of repeated failed redevelopment attempts in the three decades since it shut.
Malaysian real estate company SP Setia and veteran British developer Godfrey Bradman are leading the chase to buy the site with one other bidder also in the frame, the source said, describing the Chelsea bid as “way off the pace”.
A final decision could come as early as this week, the source told Reuters on condition of anonymity.
A report in UK trade magazine Property Week suggested Bradman’s bid may be in difficulty after funding from its backers — the reclusive billionaires David and Simon Reuben, had been withdrawn.
Bradman was behind the Broadgate Circle development in London’s main financial district in the 1980s.
A sale to SP Setia would mark its first foray into Europe and add to its residential schemes in Vietnam, Singapore and Malaysia.
The crumbling riverside edifice, which is Europe’s largest brick structure, and its quartet of art-deco white chimneys have been a recognisable silhouette on the London skyline for 80 years.
The site came on to the market after a £5.5bn (€6.8bn) plan by developer Treasury Holdings for homes, shops and offices collapsed last December and had a price tag of about £300 to £400m.
It was placed into administration by Nama and Lloyds Banking Group, which are reportedly owed about £400m between them.
Chelsea said earlier this month the power station had “the potential to become one of the most iconic football stadiums in the world”.
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