ARA Korea buys mixed-used asset in London for £280m

ARA Korea buys mixed-used commercial asset in London for £280m
The Marble Arch Place in London, UK

ARA Asset Management’s Korea subsidiary has acquired the iconic Marble Arch Place, a newly-developed mixed-used commercial asset in London, United Kingdom for £280 million.

The company acquired the property from Almacantar via two new private real estate funds managed by ARA Korea (REF) Limited.

NH Investment & Securities underwrote most of the requisite equity along with a co-investment from ARA, as with its investments in Seoul Square and Parc.1 Tower II (Parc.1 NH Finance Tower) transactions previously.

The deal was facilitated by ARA’s specialist UK real estate investor and active asset manager, ARA Dunedin.

The property, a landmark asset located at London’s West End with unparalleled views of Hyde Park and the Marble Arch, comprises over 141,000 sq ft of luxury office, residential and retail space.

Designed by world-renowned architect Rafael Viñoly, it boasts outstanding sustainability credentials that meet the BREEAM ‘Excellent’ rating.

The property, which is multi-let to a diverse base of highquality tenants, enjoys a long weighted average lease term to expiry of 15 years. This includes the office building at 5 Marble Arch which was pre-let in full to Bridgepoint, a renowned listed international private equity firm, in 2019.

Located near Marble Arch Station and Lancaster Gate Station with excellent connections via London’s transportation network, the Property sits at the forefront of several of London’s most well-curated districts including Mayfair, Hyde Park and the Connaught Village, and benefits from a plethora of dining, retail and recreational amenities in close proximity.

Anthony Kang, CEO of ARA Korea, said: “We are pleased to have successfully acquired Marble Arch Place, one of London’s most iconic landmark assets, on behalf of our investors. Notwithstanding the pandemic, the successful acquisition is testament to ARA’s ability to seamlessly execute a deal from sourcing, negotiating, and executing, leveraging its strong track record and local presence in multiple markets globally. Given London’s status as the world’s leading financial and innovation hub, it continues to draw strong demand for its commercial assets from global investors, including Korean institutional investors. With close to 90% occupancy, we are confident that it will attract other highquality tenants with its prime location, state-of-the-art facilities, and accessibility to other parts of London.”

“Following this landmark transaction in London, ARA Korea plans to further expand its outbound investments to not only UK but also Europe, North America, and Pan Asia,” Mr Kang added.

Roun Barry, CEO of ARA Dunedin said: “We are delighted to have completed another complex transaction in London as part of our strategy of acquiring best-in-class assets. Over the past year, we have acquired Nova Estate in Victoria and Minster Building in the City for our partners, leveraging our extensive experience in the UK to close on deals despite the challenges brought on by the pandemic. The Marble Arch Place is an asset which we believe will be transformative for the location. The view of Hyde Park and the tenant line up will stand the test of time.”