Hammerson sale shows investor interest in UK real estate despite Brexit
Shopping centre landlord aims to sell £1.1bn in properties by the end of 2019
Hammerson’s sale of its stake in a major shopping centre in Leicester shows that foreign investors are still keen on UK real estate despite Britain’s unsettling move towards an exit from the EU, an analyst says. The JSE-listed shopping centre landlord said on Monday it will sell its 50% stake in Highcross shopping centre to an Asian investor for £236m – a 5% discount to book value. Like its Johannesburg-listed peer Intu Properties, Hammerson’s share price has fallen since the UK voted to leave the EU in mid-2016 – an outcome that dented consumer confidence and raised input costs for retailers as the pound weakened. Retailers and their landlords are also grappling with a recent surge in online shopping in the UK. “The sale shows that there’s still a good level of international demand for UK real estate,” said David Brockton, an analyst at London-based Liberum Capital.
“The counterpoint to a weaker sterling impacting the retail market and tenants’ input costs is that the weaker...