Sainsbury's looks at sale of headquarters

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The Independent Online

Sir Peter Davis, the new chief executive of J Sainsbury, is considering selling the group's 106-year-old London headquarters to release capital of up to £300m.

If the proposal to quit the site in Southwark, south of the Thames, goes ahead, it would mean abandoning a £150m four-year refurbishing plan put in place by Mr Davis's predecessor, Dino Adriano.

A spokeswoman for Sainsbury's said: "We are sitting on valuable real estate which is underused at the moment and we have quite a few options... We need to do something with the head office to bring everyone together and improve the working environment." She said that other options included redeveloping the Southwark site or a sale and leaseback plan.

Mr Davis, known for his aggressive cost-cutting as the former head of Prudential, took over as Sainsbury's chief executive in March. Yesterday the supermarket's shares closed up 4p at 336p.

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