A French asset management firm has purchased the buildings that houses Eason and Next in Belfast city centre. At £16.4m, it is the biggest investment in the retail sector this year.
The 40-46 Donegall Place residence has been bought by Corrum Asset Management.
Both Eason and Next have flagship stores in this property.
This marks the company’s first investment in Northern Ireland and their second in the UK. Corrum Asset Management now has 101 properties in Europe.
Investment director at Corum, Philippe Cervesi, stated: “We are actively looking for high quality investment opportunities in all commercial sectors, including alternative investments.
“The purchase of 40-46 Donegall Place is only our second in the UK and first in Northern Ireland.
“We are committed to sourcing and acquiring other opportunities throughout the UK and Europe.”
Nicky Finnieston, investment director at Belfast-based estate agency Lisney, which acted on behalf of Corum, highlighted: “We are delighted to have acquired one of Belfast’s best retail assets for Corum, in what was a quick and smooth transaction.
“From identifying and agreeing the deal Corum completed within one month.
“We look forward to working with them on other transactions as they expand in our market.”
40-46 Donegall Place is located next to River Island and Marks & Spencer.
This deal is the second largest investment transaction announced for Belfast city centre this week.
A private investor paid £2.5m for two floors that house gym chain PureGum on Adelaide Street.
Speaking earlier this week, Neil McShane of Lambert Smith Hampton highlighted that the existing economic and political uncertainty had affected supply of possible investment properties on to the market.
“Good quality assets are continuing to trade well but there hasn’t been enough of them. However, there has been a flurry of new opportunities in the last few weeks,” he said.
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