The Pears family’s Telereal is poised to buy an £800m portfolio of offices and banks from the Royal Bank of Scotland.
In a deal funded by Prupim, Telereal is understood to have been selected as preferred bidder on ‘Project Acorn’ earlier this week by RBS and its adviser, Cushman & Wakefield.
The company, which is owned by William Pears Group, beat competition from Nick Leslau’s Prestbury Group and Moorfield to seize a portfolio that contains the Strand head office of the Queen’s bank, Coutts, along with RBS offices and bank branches around the country, such as 1 Princes Street in Edinburgh and 28 Cavendish Square in London’s West End.
The 2.1m sq ft portfolio produces £47m a year in rent. It is three-quarters offices and a quarter high street bank branches, across 63 properties.
The quick progress of the deal – the news broke of a potential sale just over a month ago – will be an encouraging sign to an investment market badly hit by the credit crunch.
Several high-profile deals have been pulled since the summer, including Mitchells & Butlers’ £4.5bn joint venture with Robert Tchenguiz and British Land’s sale of a 75% stake in the £1.7bn Meadowhall shopping centre in Sheffield.
It is thought that RBS had put the portfolio up for sale to help fund its takeover of Dutch bank ABN Amro, and could be offering to provide debt for the winning bidder.
All parties refused to comment.