In a pickle: The Gherkin to be auctioned off as receivers called in
Thursday 24 April 2014
London’s Gherkin skyscraper is set to be auctioned off later this year after lenders appointed receivers to the iconic City building today.
The tower, formally known as 30 St Mary’s Axe, was at one time the UK’s most expensive office when German bank IVG and private equity firm Evans Randall bought it for £630 million from original owner Swiss Re at the top of the market in 2007.
But the financial crisis sent its value plunging and the buyers defaulted on a £400 million loan from a five-bank consortium in 2009. Part of the loan was also made in Swiss francs, increasing the burden on the borrowers as the currency soared against the pound.
But recovering property markets and huge demand for assets in the capital have boosted sale prospects for the Gherkin, prompting lenders to bring in Deloitte as receivers. It is understood a sale is likely within months.
One senior property source put the value of the Gherkin at close to £600 million and said it would attract interest from a host of international and domestic buyers. He said: “This is a trophy product. Values for prime assets are approaching the levels we saw at the peak of the market.”
Potential buyers include Chinese insurer Ping An, which bought the Lloyd’s Building for £260 million last year.
The Gherkin was commissioned by Swiss Re to replace the Baltic Exchange, damaged by an IRA bomb in 1992. Architects Foster and Partners designed the building, which would become one of the design companies most famous creations.
Work on the construction began in 2001 and the Gherkin opened three years later, with more than 76,500 square metres of commercial space including a club on the top floor with panoramic views.
- 1 BBC told new political editor must be 'impartial' with Nick Robinson reportedly stepping down
- 2 Number of young homeless people in Britain is 'more than three times the official figures'
- 3 Humans of New York image of crying gay teen receives best response yet from Ellen DeGeneres
- 4 The map showing the most dangerous tourist destinations in Europe, according to the Foreign Office
- 5 Swedish minister gives strongest case yet on why EU should stop turning away asylum seekers
BBC told new political editor must be 'impartial' with Nick Robinson reportedly stepping down
Isis propaganda video shows 25 Syrian soldiers executed by teenage militants in Palmyra
Number of young homeless people in Britain is 'more than three times the official figures'
Humans of New York image of crying gay teen receives best response yet from Ellen DeGeneres
The map showing the most dangerous tourist destinations in Europe, according to the Foreign Office
More Britons believe that multiculturalism makes the country worse - not better, says poll
Nathan Collier: Montana man inspired by same-sex marriage ruling requests right to wed two wives
Greece crisis: IMF was pushed around by Angela Merkel and Nicholas Sarkozy – and now it is being humiliated
Forget little green men – aliens will look like humans, says Cambridge University evolution expert
Girl, 7, stares down hate preacher at Ohio festival with pro-LGBT rainbow flag gesture
Osborne to cap family benefits at £23,000 – announced ahead of his post-election Budget
iJobs Money & Business
£15000 - £17000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company offers a range of ...
£15000 - £16000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Customer Service Advisors are r...
£20000 - £25000 per annum + OTE £45K: SThree: SThree were established in 1986....
£40000 - £60000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Compliance Manager is require...