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TIAA Henderson Real Estate acquires office portfolio in Guildford

TIAA Henderson Real Estate (TH Real Estate), on behalf of its c.£165m UK Property Fund, has acquired an office portfolio in Guildford for £3.4m. The portfolio was acquired from Astranta General Partner and Astranta Nominee Ltd in an off market transaction.

TH Real Estate intends to convert part of the investment  - comprised of four separate buildings -  into residential use, in order to capitalise on the current demand for town centre dwellings in this location.

The buildings purchased, include York House, Graham House, Chertsey House  & 30/36 Chertsey St, all adjacent to Guildford High Street. Plans involve converting part of the office use of the buildings over the next two years, while retaining the retail use on the lower floors where applicable. York House, a fully-let office investment, will be retained in order to provide income to the fund. The residential development will consist primarily of studios and one bed apartments.

The Fund will be entering into a joint venture agreement with London & Devonshire Trust - a private award-winning housebuilding company - on the project.

The Fund now holds 24 direct assets in addition to two indirect holdings. It has significantly outperformed the IPD benchmark on both a 12 month and three, five and ten year return**, based on performance data to 31 March 2014.

Cameron Fraser, Director of Balanced Funds, TH Real Estate, said:
This asset reflects the Fund’s appetite for value-add opportunities in markets which we think are optimally positioned for future growth. The site is superbly located for town centre dwellings with excellent transport links and adjacent to the high street retail pitch which will be a key attraction for the target market.  The residential market has and continues to strengthen, and with limited supply in the pipeline we believe the subject property will deliver a very attractive return over the hold period.

James Birkett Development Director, London & Devonshire Trust, added:
We are always attracted to well located, city centre sites, suitable for a range of uses and this site in Guildford is no exception. 
Residential occupiers will have a vibrant centre on their doorstep and a fast service to London, all at affordable prices. We look forward to working with TH Real Estate and implementing our business plan.

Issued by Henderson Real Estate Asset Management Limited, 201 Bishopsgate, EC2M 3BN. Authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.

TH Real Estate is a name under which Henderson Real Estate Asset Management Limited provides investment products and services.

Past performance is not a guide to future returns. The value of investments and any income will fluctuate (this may be partly be the result of exchange rate fluctuation) and investors may not get back the full amount invested. Where opinions have been expressed, they are based on current market conditions and are subject to change without notice.

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