Land Secs sells stake in Bullring

Land Securities yesterday confirmed it has sold its 33 per cent stake in the Bullring shopping mall in Birmingham, to Australia&rsquo;s Future Fund for &pound;210m in one of the biggest UK property deals of the year.<br /><br />The deal comes three weeks after mounting speculation that the property company was in advanced talks to sell its one-third interest in the centre to the Australian sovereign wealth investor. <br /><br />The price achieved reflects a net yield of 6.85 per cent.&ldquo;The absence of operational control over the Bullring made it an unusual asset within Land Securities&rsquo; portfolio where we look to create value through successful development and active management of properties,&rdquo; said managing director of Land Securities Retail Richard Akers. <br /><br />The Bullring had performed well for the group, Akers also said, adding the sale proceeds would increase the group&rsquo;s flexibility to exploit future acquisition opportunities.<br /><br />The 1.2m square foot shopping centre opened in Autumn 2003 and is home to around 160 shops and restaurants, providing a total annual rental income of &pound;45m. <br /><br />The Future Fund was established by the Australian government in 2006 to accumulate financial assets to address its unfunded superannuation liabilities. It had A$61bn&nbsp; (&pound;32.5bn) of assets at end-June.<br /><br />The remaining two stakes in the Bullring are owned by rival Hammerson and asset manager Henderson Global Investors.