Selling its R14bn Earl’s Court London residential development would make life a lot easier for JSE-listed Capital & Counties (CapCo), which wants to focus on its retail success, the iconic Covent Garden. Late on Monday, Hong Kong property tycoon Li Ka-shing said his CK Asset Holdings wanted to buy 90% of the Earl’s Court development. CapCo CEO Ian Hawksworth has been under pressure to split the company into two companies as its UK-based assets — Covent Garden and Earl’s Court — have not performed in tandem. One company would own the Covent Garden retail centre and one would own residential asset Earl’s Court. CapCo has taken 10 years to prepare the 31ha residential site for one of the most ambitious housing developments in London’s modern history. The company wants to build £707m worth of luxury houses on this site. Construction is already under way on about 800 homes at Lillie Square, part of the site owned in a venture with Hong Kong’s Kwok family. This part of Earl’s Court would ...

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