Wellington-headquartered investor Robt. Jones Holdings has added to its $1.5 billion commercial and industrial property portfolio and is turning its attention to the British market.
Precinct Properties, previously called AMP NZ Office Trust, yesterday announced the $97 million sale of SAP Tower, originally developed as the Fay Richwhite building, on the Queen St/Wyndham St corner in Auckland's CBD.
Greg Loveridge, RJH New Zealand general manager and director, said the business would own, manage and improve that tower.
"What we do is take buildings and create high-end smaller suites and there's not many smaller suites that have views, especially the kind that comes out of that building," he said.
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David Rankin, RJH investment manager, was now in London, looking at investments in provincial areas including Manchester, Leeds, Bristol and the West Country, Loveridge said.
RJH, founded in 1961 by Sir Bob Jones, has 23 buildings in Auckland, Wellington and Sydney with almost 500 commercial and government tenancies. The SAP deal is due to settle in February. Then RJH will have seven office towers in the Auckland CBD and three in Takapuna.
The business describes itself as "New Zealand's largest private CBD office-building owner and, specifically, the largest in Auckland and Wellington ... The hallmark characteristics of RJH buildings are either north-facing corner sites or free-standing towers, both ensuring maximum natural light, and our maintenance standards are recognised as of the highest possible standard. The company also has a substantial Sydney portfolio with circa 200 lessees and a sizeable industrial building portfolio of circa 80 buildings."
SAP is a 17,800sq m 29-level block built in 1988 on a site sold by then Herald publisher Wilson & Horton.
Meanwhile, Loveridge said a new Shortland St bar/bistro, designed by Cheshire Architects for the plaza area at the foot of the AIG Building, would open in January. That follows the success of popup eatery The Hamptons there last summer until May.