The Qatari Investment Authority has taken a 20% stake in Chelsfield.

The agreement will pave the way for a strategic investment partnership between the tiny oil-rich Gulf state and the veteran property magnates to take advantage of worsening conditions in the commercial- property market.

Attracting investment from the QIA, which manages the surplus revenues earned from the sale of Qatar’s abundant energy reserves, will be regarded as a coup for Bernerd and Lipton — giving them substantial financial firepower.

The deal price is shrouded in confidentiality agreements, but property sources believe the Qataris have invested more than £80m for the 20% stake — valuing Chelsfield at more than £400m.

Sunday Times, The Times, Daily Telegraph