Immobel Capital Partners, the investment management business of Immobel Group, the largest listed real estate developer in Belgium, announces it has signed a sale and purchase agreement[1] to acquire 50% of the White Rose Park from OIRP Investment 10, part of Orion Capital Managers. White Rose is a green office campus situated just outside of the City of Leeds. The investment values the Park at circa £110 million, representing a net initial yield of c. 6.75% and will be held in Joint Venture with Munroe K.

The off market transaction is the first investment for the newly launched Immobel Capital Partners and will be the first seed asset forming a key plank in its Green Office Strategy. This strategy will see it invest in and create a new generation of green offices in leading European cities which have clear demand for a new generation of workplaces and are expected to deliver above-average growth as they benefit from wider trends such as urbanisation, changing demographics and ongoing technological evolution.

White Rose Park is a 28 acre (11 ha) green office campus providing a lettable area of over 500,000 sqft across 9 buildings. It is currently circa 98% let to a range of blue chip organisations including; DAZN, the sports media giant, HSBC, Capita, Telefonica and education and government tenants including the Gorse Academies Trust, the NHS and the Police & Crime Commisioner for West Yorkshire. In addition to 20 acres (8 ha) of open space at White Rose, it also provides a strong business amenity and lifestyle offer to the circa 5,500 people who work at the park, offering a conference centre, outdoor sports pitch, restaurants and a nursery. Located a two minute walk from the White Rose Shopping centre and a bus or bike ride from Leeds’ city centre, the Park will soon be the beneficiary of a new train station which will connect it to central Leeds in about four minutes as well as to the surrounding suburbs. There is significant identified occupational demand in Leeds for office accommodation such as the White Rose Park which meets the modern day and post pandemic requirements and supply is low. Immobel Capital Partners will work closely with Munroe K led by David Aspin who has been responsible for the evolution of the park and its high quality ESG credentials.

Leeds’ economy is one of the United Kingdom’s fasted growing cities and is part of the UK’s largest city region outside of London with over 119,000 companies and numerous higher education institutions providing it with an estimated urban population of about 1.9 million[2] people and serving 3 million people in the region. The city’s economy has seen strong growth, having increased by 34% in the last 10 years and is predicted to grow strongly over the next 10 years driven by a strong TMT sector as well as finance, professional services. It is also the headquarters location for the NHS whilst other government organisations have also selected it for their HQ’s such as the recently created UK Infrastructure bank. 

Immobel Capital Partners was represented by Savills and Orion Capital Managers was represented by CBRE.

Launched in January 2022, Immobel Capital Partners will focus on creating investment strategies in the office and residential sectors where Immobel is already a market leader and will have a strong focus on those urban centres that provide the opportunity to create a new generation of sustainable and smart living and workplace environments close to Central Business Districts. Balance sheet co-investment from Immobel alongside third party capital will ensure clear alignment with investors. Value creation will be delivered through the careful selection of assets that are gaining from long-term structural forces and which are less dependent on the economic cycle.

Duncan Owen, CEO Immobel Capital Partners, said: “The acquisition of White Rose clearly aligns with our strategy to stock pick assets which provide opportunities to unlock further value through improvements in their sustainability and social credentials. I have known and worked with David Aspin, CEO of Munroe K, on various projects for over 20 years. Our plan for White Rose Park will see us continuing to evolve the business park in partnership with the Munroe K team into a knowledge and talent-based campus with a focus on delivering tangible ESG improvement. The current use of sustainable materials, extensive electric car charging points, PV cells and 100% on site renewable energy all help the positive ESG impact of the park , meaning our goal for the Park to be fully operationally carbon neutral by 2030 is within our grasp.”

[1] Subject to conditions precedent. Closing is foreseen before 30 April 2022.

[2] 2020 Population Stat – World Statistical data.