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Malaysians secure £200m-plus Victoria offices

Malaysians secure £200m-plus Victoria offices

By Paul Norman – Friday, March 22, 2013 15:05

Malaysian haji pilgrims fund Lembaga Tabung Haji has completed the acquisition of its second major asset in central London, with the circa £205m purchase of 151 Buckingham Palace Road, SW1, CoStar News understands.

Market sources said Lembaga has now completed on the acquisition of the Victoria asset from Ivanhoé Cambridge. A price of £205m is understood to have been agreed which would equate to a yield of just under 7%.

Lembaga is understood to have fended off stiff competition from underbidder Hines, as well as Malaysian government funds EPF and KWAP.

The purchase of 151 Buckingham Palace Road follows the completion of Tabung Haji’s deal last September to buy SJ Berwin’s distinctive City offices at 10 Queen Street Place, EC4, for £165m, reflecting an initial yield of 5%.

The deal was first revealed by CoStar News in July, when Tabung Haji entered into talks to buy the 221,198 sq ft block from Irish investor Jaguar Capital.

Lembaga Tabung Haji is the Malaysian hajj pilgrims fund board, formerly known as Lembaga Urusan dan Tabung Haji. The fund facilitates savings for the pilgrimage to Mecca through investment in Shariah-compliant vehicles.

Ivanhoé Cambridge instructed CBRE to sell 151 Buckingham Palace Road last October for £220m, reflecting an initial yield of 6.4%.

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Probably Azeez could also take the opportunity to provide validation to the media whether one of the tenants of 10 Queen Street Place (Little Ship Sailing Club) EC4 which serves spirit and non halal items in their menu. It would interesting to watch how the man would wiggle himself out of the contentious issue where TH is earning from operations which are not syariah compliant.

There is a suggestion that media be brought to have a quiet little tea at TH CEO’s new place in Notting Hill. However, taking the media to go for shopping in the high street regular shops plus Harrods sounds about average.

Probably the highlight of the ‘Glam is the Game’ is the explanation for TH to award the renovation contract of three floors to Seri Libana Sdn. Bhd. and none of the TH BOD members have any interest in this company.

As part of the good corporate governance game and his own personal commitment as the TH Chairman with high integrity and credibility, Azeez is expected to announce that several representatives of the depositors would be appointed into the BOD and investment panel. It is statutory for PLCs to do annual general meeting. Hence, Azeez would now hold “AGM”
for depositors, to bring them up to speed on the operations of TH.

He should also take this opportunity to explain extraordinary entrepreneur Shaik Akmal Shaikh Alaudin (who happens to be very close acquaintance to Kalimullah “Riong Kali” Hassan and Lord of GLC Tan Sri Nor Mohamed “Blackula” Yakcop and a name linked to pre-Red Berry The Malaysian Insider) has no influence what so ever on TH CEO Dato’ Paduka Ismee Ismail for access to lucrative projects and investments home and abroad.

The ‘Glam is the Game’ dos in Bangsar South, Saudi Arabia and London would definitely provide TH to engage the media closer to share their plans, investments, potential opportunities and operations. They are PR events Azeez planned that should not be missed, especially to bloggers.

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