Anne Gibson

Property editor of the NZ Herald

Coutts buys Oracle's Auckland HQ

Larry Ellison and Russell Coutts on BMW Oracle Racing in the Louis Vuitton Pacific Series yachting regatta on Auckland's Waitemata Harbour.
Larry Ellison and Russell Coutts on BMW Oracle Racing in the Louis Vuitton Pacific Series yachting regatta on Auckland's Waitemata Harbour.

Parties associated with America's Cup winner Sir Russell Coutts are understood to have bought Oracle House in Auckland's CBD in a deal that could be worth up to $50 million, making him the landlord of his boss American businessman Larry Ellison.

Although QV shows the big squat four-level premises opposite Telecom's national headquarters in Victoria St West is still in the hands of the developers, the Herald has been told the sailing giant is now the landlord of his boss, Larry Ellison, who has naming rights on the sparkling new block.

Coutts, chief executive of Oracle Racing, is understood to be in San Francisco now but has a house at Whangaparoa.

The deal over the large Auckland office block, understood to have come about because of the association between Ellison and Coutts, has the city's property experts abuzz as it is the sailing giant's first entry into the bigger realm of commercial property investment.

QV shows Mansons Properties still owns the A-grade Green Star building at 162 Victoria Street West but a title transfer is understood to be pending.

Before it was finished, Barfoot & Thompson advertised 500sq m to 7500sq m offices with on-site carparking, saying it was just a short walk to Victoria Park, Queen Street and the Viaduct with bus stops at the door and easy motorway access.

Publicity in April this year said Oracle had leased the top floor joining Paymark, New Zealand's largest electronic payments provider.

Culum Manson of Manson TCLM said today he could not comment on the building or any deal.

Oracle's Auckland HQ:

View Larger Map

The block rose to national prominence when it was at the centre of a murder investigation while it was under construction. In September 2010, the site was scrutinised during the Carmen Thomas murder inquiry.

Police searching for the body of the Auckland mother lowered a high-tech camera into a drainage system and confirmed they were speaking to several people who were helping with their inquiries, some of whom were "of more interest than others", the Herald reported at the time.

- NZ Herald

© Copyright 2014, APN New Zealand Limited

Assembled by: (static) on production apcf01 at 22 Oct 2014 21:59:17 Processing Time: 414ms