Our year at a glance
Q1 April – June 2010
In June we agreed to sell our 28,660m2 retail, office and residential development at Park House on Oxford Street, W1. Barwa agreed to pay for the site, all of the construction costs and a profit share on completion. This sale and the subsequent crystallising of all of our anticipated profit early – which we agreed in March 2011 totalled £296m – highlights our ability to create value through planning, design, construction and asset sales.
The first quarter saw us acquire two shopping centres. We bought the O2 Centre, NW3, for £125.9m, and we bought a 50% stake in the Westgate Centre, Oxford, from The Crown Estate for just over £27m. These centres are in excellent locations and offer attractive asset management and potential development opportunities.
Q2 July – September 2010
The summer months saw plenty of activity resulting from our relationship with Primark. We announced that the retailer would take a 13,100m2 store on Oxford Street from Oriana, our 50:50 joint venture with Frogmore. We also announced that we would construct a 6,500m2 store for them at The Centre in Livingston, and we submitted a planning application for a 5,550m2 Primark store at our Bridges shopping centre in Sunderland. In March 2011, terms were also agreed and planning permission achieved for Primark’s first store on a retail park, at Westwood Cross, Thanet.
Simon Palley joined the Board of Land Securities as a Non-executive Director on 1 August 2010. Simon has had a successful career in investment banking, consulting and private equity, rising to be Managing Partner at leading private equity firm BC Partners. Commenting on the appointment, Land Securities’ Chairman, Alison Carnwath, said: “Simon has an outstanding track record in business across a broad range of industry sectors. He will add further strength to the experienced and strong team of Non-executive Directors we already have.”
July saw us announce the restart of development activity at Trinity Leeds, in Leeds city centre. The 75,900m2 scheme was the first major retail-led development in the UK to get the go ahead in recent times. We had more than 40% pre-lettings in place before we restarted construction and the centre will boast an array of great retailers and brands when it opens in spring 2013.
Q3 October – December 2010
One New Change, EC4, our unique office and leisure destination in the City, opened to great acclaim in October 2010. Designed by architect Jean Nouvel, the iconic building offers stunning views of St Paul’s Cathedral and an unrivalled mix of retailers, restaurants and cafés. The retail element was 100% let on opening. The development has already scooped the MIPIM Architectural Review Future Project Award for mixed-use – the first time a UK development has won since 30 St Mary’s Axe (The Gherkin) in 2005.
In December St David’s Dewi Sant shopping centre in Cardiff won the Supreme Gold Award 2010 – the highest honour from the British Council of Shopping Centres. The Cardiff centre, a joint-venture with Capital Shopping Centres, was highly praised for the way its innovative architectural approach integrates the new centre and the existing streetscape. Also during the year Land Securities was named Estates Gazette’s Property Company of the Year in Retail, the Property Manager’s Association Landlord of the Year and Property Week’s Property Developer of the Year. And finally, our role in leading on development in London was also recognised when we were named Property Company of the Year by City AM.
Q4 January – March 2011
Construction of 20 Fenchurch Street, EC3, officially started on Tuesday 18 January 2011. The Rafael Viñoly-designed building will have 37 floors and provide 63,240m2 of world-class office space topped by a public sky garden. The range of floor plates will ensure the building appeals to a wide spectrum of prospective tenants. Earlier in the year we formed the 20 Fenchurch Street Limited Partnership with Canary Wharf Group to develop the scheme.
January saw us announce that Factory Outlets beat their previous record for sales, going out on a high in the final week of 2010. Gunwharf Quays, Portsmouth, and The Galleria, Hatfield, saw record turnover for retail and leisure in the week after Christmas and a 6% increase in sales for the year. The success confirms the attraction of the centres and the appeal of big brand names at good prices.