HALF-YEAR logistics space transaction record broken

Bidwells’ Logistics and Industrial team transacted just over 2m sq ft of space in the first half of 2019 – more than doubling its previous six-month record.

The team transacted a mammoth 2,165,321 square feet of space across the Eastern Region in H1 acting on the most notable Big Box deals for a variety of clients. The total smashed the previous record from H2 2017 when they disposed or acquired 767,360 square feet.

Bidwells’ largest transaction of H1 was a 596,175 sq ft freehold turnkey sale to Urban Outfitters at Gateway Peterborough. The agreed price was close to £40m for the new distribution facility and work has commenced on-site (photo).

Also, at Gateway, Peterborough terms have been agreed for two speculative warehouse units. Gateway 226 will be 226,300 sq ft and Gateway 385 will be 385,000 sq ft and have been funded by BentalI Green Oak. Planning has been submitted with completion of the two units targeted for Q2 2020.

In Bury St Edmunds the team have let 147,000 sq ft warehouse to Unipart at £886,550 per annum. The unit was built speculatively by developers Jaynic and was vacant for only three months.

Following completion of the letting the team have sold the investment to Savills Investment Management for £17.25m, reflecting a net initial yield of 4.77%.

Other significant deals include:

  • 130,000 sq ft let to Perkins Engines in Peterborough at £5.50 psf
  • Letting of 127,000 sq ft warehouse in Thetford on behalf of Clearbell Capital. The team purchased the unit in 2018, agreed a surrender with the existing tenant, refurbished the space and re-let on favorable terms to Multimatic for 15 years
  • Contracts have been exchanged on 81,000 sq ft at Finmere Park, Peterborough. The existing term ended on the 1st May with the new terms being agreed only 9 days thereafter.
  • The assignment of 49,000 sq ft to Anglian Water on Tower Close, Huntingdon at a rent of £267,000 pa.

Research released today by the Cambridge-based property consultancy focusing on the Industrial sector in Cambridge found take up continues to be above trend with 220,999 sq ft let in H1, driving the overall availability rate down to 4 per cent.

Cambridge demand is up on 2018 with R&D and tech firms increasingly driving requirements. Overall, there are current requirements for 1.5m sq ft, with Bidwells predicting  rents to  continue moving above their current high of £14.50 per square foot (psf) in the City Centre.

Patrick Stanton, Head of the Logistics and Industrial Team commented:

“It has been a spectacular start to 2019 for the team. We have continued to see good levels of demand across our markets, most notably for new and good quality warehouse stock over 100,000 sq ft. With these deals completing the level of supply continues to dwindle with occupiers short on options.

“Our specialist knowledge of this big box sector enables us to provide key, strategic advice to our clients. The number and range of instructions means we have a full handle on current occupier requirements across East Anglia”.

“We all continue to watch Brexit developments as they unfold however, given the favourable market dynamics we believe the market will remain strong during the remainder of 2019 and well into 2020”.

Bidwells’‘ latest industrial sector research can be found here: https://www.bidwells.co.uk/insights-and-research/our-view-on-cambridgeshire-industrial-summer-2019/

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