iNVEZZ.com, Wednesday, August 13: has announced its latest move towards reshaping its retail portfolio.
The UK’s largest real estate investment trust (REIT) said in a statement today that it had sold its 50 percent stake in Cabot Circus shopping centre, Quakers Friars and surrounding shops in Bristol to AXA Real Estate, on behalf of its clients, for £267.8 million.
Cabot Circus comprises an 830,000 sq ft covered shopping centre, Quakers Friars a 170,000 sq ft luxury goods and dining quarter, and 370,000 sq ft of adjoining high street shops.
The assets, which currently produce a net rental income of £17.3 million to Land Securities, comprise the Bristol Partnership — a joint venture between Land Securities and peer Hammerson (LON:HMSO). The JV was launched in 2008 as one of the largest retail-led city centre urban regeneration projects in the UK.
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The deal with AXA, conditional on EU merger control approval, comes soon after Land Securities’ disposal of The Bridges shopping centre in Sunderland ().
Scott Parsons, managing director for retail at Land Securities, said in the REIT’s satetment today that the sale, “demonstrates the pace at which Land Securities is reshaping its retail portfolio to focus on the key themes of dominance, experience and convenience”. He added: “This portfolio reshaping is set to continue with our planned retail development programme to create the very best shopping environments which reflect evolving consumer behaviour.”
Last month, Land Securities announced a strong start to the year, as it continued to execute its strategy at pace across the business ().
**Land Securities share price advances**
Land Securities’ share price has been trading in positive territory so far today. By 10:06 BST, the stock had gained 0.57 percent to 1,050.00p.
Of the 15 analysts projecting 12 month price targets for the FTSE 100-listed REIT for the Financial Times, the median target is 1,128.00p, with a high estimate of 1,246.00p and a low estimate of 870.00p.
According to the FT, as of August 8, 2014, the consensus forecast amongst 27 polled investment analysts covering Land Securities advises investors to hold their position in the company.
**As of 12:21 BST, buy Land Securities shares at 1,028.00p.**
**As of 12:21 BST, sell Land Securities shares at 1,026.00p.**