Benson Elliot makes first UK acquisition

Benson Elliot Capital Management, the leading private equity real estate firm, has exchanged contracts on the acquisition of CBXII, Midsummer Boulevard, Milton Keynes. The property has been acquired for £20.6 million from the CASPAR Fund, managed by Henderson Global Investors, reflecting an initial yield of 10%.

The acquisition, the first purchase for Benson Elliot in the UK, was made on behalf of Benson Elliot Real Estate Partners II, L.P. and brings the total number of investments since its launch in 2006 to eight. The fund now holds a broad portfolio of asset types in France, Germany, Spain, Scandinavia, Central Europe and the UK.

CBXII is a modern, mixed-use city centre building comprising c. 150,000 sq ft (14,000 sq m) of offices, retail and leisure accommodation, split over three buildings – Midsummer East, Midsummer West and Midsummer Court. Office tenants include Argos, the Homes and Communities Agency and Regus.

XLB, Bidwells and Travers Smith acted for Benson Elliot; Allsop acted for the vendor.

Phil Irons, Partner and Head of UK Investment at Benson Elliot, commented: “CBXII is a good quality asset in a strong location, with real added value potential. The purchase price is well below replacement cost, and we have been able to acquire the building at what we believe to be an attractive yield in the current environment.”

Marc Mogull, Benson Elliot’s Managing Partner added: “We are examining a number of similar opportunities in the UK. We’re mindful that past excesses have yet to work their way through the system so we’re focussing on investments that offer sustainable value today and the opportunity to enhance value over time.”

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