Manders sells centre for 82m pounds

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MANDERS, the Birmingham- based inks group, has sold its Wolverhampton shopping centre to the Prudential insurance company for pounds 82m.

The sale price is 42 per cent higher than book value. In 1991 the chartered surveyor Healey & Baker said it was worth pounds 57.5m, but the property's value was written down from pounds 65m the previous year.

Disposal of the Mander Centre is the latest stage in a comprehensive refocusing. Two years ago Manders was involved in property, paint and inks. It has now raised pounds 137m selling paint and property assets to concentrate on inks.

Roger Akers, chief executive, said: 'The proceeds now available will enable Manders to build on its focused activity in the UK and abroad.' However, the company said yesterday that the sale of the shopping centre would result in a pounds 10m tax charge.

The Mander centre contains 144 retail outlets and numbers Tesco, Boots and WH Smith as tenants. It was built between 1965 and 1976 and was refurbished in 1987.

It earned rental income of pounds 5.3m in 1992, up from pounds 4.9m in 1991. On the price paid by Prudential the yield on the property is about 7 per cent.

In 1992 Manders beat off a takeover attempt from the paint maker Kalon, whose offer valued the whole of its target at pounds 90m. Shares in Manders fell 3p to 380p yesterday.