Chinese insurance giant Anbang nears £750m Heron Tower deal

Kasmira Jefford
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The tower, completed in 2011, is now almost fully let (95 per cent) after a slow start
The Heron Tower in the City that is part-owned by property tycoon Gerald Ronson could soon change hands after a Chinese insurance giant emerged as a frontrunner to buy the skyscraper for £750m.

Anbang Insurance, a privately owned group that last year snapped up New York’s Waldorf Astoria hotel for almost $2bn (£1.3bn), is close to buying the 46-storey building, with a deal expected to be announced in the coming weeks.

American advisory firm Eastdil Secured is leading the talks with the building’s owners on behalf of Anbang, The Sunday Times said.

The building, officially known as 110 Bishopsgate after a renaming row last year with its biggest tenant Salesforce, is owned by Ronson’s Heron International, the Oman sovereign wealth fund, the State General Reserve Fund and Saudi Arabia’s Prince Abdul Aziz bin Fahd.

In 2013, the owners faced the threat of having to sell the iconic building to pay a £315m loan owed to banks led by Wells Fargo before eventually sealing a £370m refinancing deal.

If the £750m deal goes ahead, it will beat the £720m price paid by Brazil’s billionaire Safra family for the nearby Gherkin skyscraper last year, setting a new record for the City since the financial crisis.

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