Carpet king nets pounds 15m for property group pounds 15.6m for CW Harr is

Lord Harris of Peckham, the carpet king, and his family have made pounds 15.6m from the sale of their private retail property company. The tycoon has sold C W Harris Properties to Pillar Property, the quoted property investor that specialises in retail warehouse parks and shopping centres.

Over the past three years Lord Harris has built a property portfolio consisting mainly of out-of-town retail freeholds. CW Harris owns five retail warehouse schemes and a high street shop in St Albans. The warehouses are in Luton, Orpington, Dartford, Carmarthen and Preston and have a total floor-space of 350,000 square feet and an annual rent income of pounds 3.5m.

Pillar is paying for the deal with 80 per cent cash (pounds 12.4m) and 20 per cent of shares (pounds 3.2m) valued at 231p a share. Lord Harris's family has agreed not to sell the shares for at least six months.

Pillar has been built up by chairman Raymond Mould and his colleague Patrick Vaughan. The duo came to fame when they founded the Arlington group of business parks in the 1980s, before selling up to British Aerospace. They formed Pillar in 1991 and floated it three years later. This latest deal brings Pillar's total number of retail parks to 20.

Lord Harris said yesterday that he had "every confidence in the management of Pillar and the future success of the company." He said he was pleased he and his family would be holding 1.2 million Pillar shares.

All the warehouse developments sold to Pillar are fully let to tenants like Lord Harris's Carpetright group, as well as Currys, Halfords, Homebase, MFI and B&Q. The average unexpired lease length is 18 years.

The investment properties of Harris Properties are valued at pounds 49.2m and the net assets at 30 June 1997 stood at pounds 25.9m, which included pounds 11.7m of loans which will be repaid on completion of the deal.

Mr Mould commented: "The additions of these properties to Pillar's already substantial retail park portfolio underlines our strategy of investing in a sector which continues to demonstrate well above average growth."

The deal also means yet another fortune for Lord Harris, the self-made millionaire who sold his first carpet at the age of 13 in Peckham market.

He went on to build a nationwide carpet shop chain Harris Queensway which he sold at the height of the 1980s boom. But he couldn't keep away from the action and founded Carpetright in 1988 which itself boasts nearly 300 stores. What became Lowndes Queensway went bust at the beginning of the recession, something Lord Harris bitterly regretted.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
PROMOTED VIDEO
ebooks
ebooksA special investigation by Andy McSmith
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Money & Business

Recruitment Genius: Software Development Manager

£40000 - £50000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...

Ashdown Group: Product Manager - (Product Marketing, Financial Services)

£30000 - £35000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: Marketing Manager - Marke...

Recruitment Genius: Compliance Assistant

£13000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This Pension Specialist was established ...

Ashdown Group: Market Research Executive

£23000 - £26000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: Market Research Executive...

Day In a Page

Isis hostage crisis: The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power

Isis hostage crisis

The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power, says Robert Fisk
Missing salvage expert who found $50m of sunken treasure before disappearing, tracked down at last

The runaway buccaneers and the ship full of gold

Salvage expert Tommy Thompson found sunken treasure worth millions. Then he vanished... until now
Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

Maverick artist Grayson Perry backs our campaign
Assisted Dying Bill: I want to be able to decide about my own death - I want to have control of my life

Assisted Dying Bill: 'I want control of my life'

This week the Assisted Dying Bill is debated in the Lords. Virginia Ironside, who has already made plans for her own self-deliverance, argues that it's time we allowed people a humane, compassionate death
Move over, kale - cabbage is the new rising star

Cabbage is king again

Sophie Morris banishes thoughts of soggy school dinners and turns over a new leaf
11 best winter skin treats

Give your moisturiser a helping hand: 11 best winter skin treats

Get an extra boost of nourishment from one of these hard-working products
Paul Scholes column: The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him

Paul Scholes column

The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him
Frank Warren column: No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans

Frank Warren's Ringside

No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans
Isis hostage crisis: Militant group stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

Isis stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

The jihadis are being squeezed militarily and economically, but there is no sign of an implosion, says Patrick Cockburn
Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action

Virtual reality: Seeing is believing

Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action
Homeless Veterans appeal: MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’

Homeless Veterans appeal

MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’ to help
Larry David, Steve Coogan and other comedians share stories of depression in new documentary

Comedians share stories of depression

The director of the new documentary, Kevin Pollak, tells Jessica Barrett how he got them to talk
Has The Archers lost the plot with it's spicy storylines?

Has The Archers lost the plot?

A growing number of listeners are voicing their discontent over the rural soap's spicy storylines; so loudly that even the BBC's director-general seems worried, says Simon Kelner
English Heritage adds 14 post-war office buildings to its protected lists

14 office buildings added to protected lists

Christopher Beanland explores the underrated appeal of these palaces of pen-pushing
Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Scientists unearthed the cranial fragments from Manot Cave in West Galilee