Chinese firm buys former Bear Stearns headquarters for £270m

A Chinese firm has forked out £270 million on a Canary Wharf tower as Asian demand for London property shows little sign of abating.

Cheung Kei Group has bought 5 Churchill Place - the former Bear Stearns headquarters - from Said Holdings in a deal said to have delivered the seller a "substantial return" on investment.

The majority of the site is let to US banking giant JP Morgan, which rents 10 floors, while Time Inc, American Express, Balfour Beatty and Cision Gorkana also have office space.

Said Holdings founder Wafic Said said: "Said Holdings bought this building at an attractive price when financial markets were in a state of some turmoil.

"A well-let asset in Canary Wharf seemed to our board to be a sound investment at that difficult time.

"We are still confident in the strength of the London market, but received a compelling offer from buyer Cheung Kei Group."

It comes after Hong Kong food conglomerate Lee Kum Kee spent £1.3 billion buying out Canary Wharf Group's and Land Securities's 50% stakes in the "Walkie Talkie" skyscraper in June.

London's landmark "cheesegrater" building was also sold in March to the investment vehicle of Chinese property magnate Cheung Chung Kiu for £1.15 billion.

Ross Davies, partner at Capital Real Estate Partners, said: "5 Churchill Place is a well-positioned asset in the heart of the Canary Wharf area, which will benefit from the opening of Crossrail in 2018.

"The sale price reflects a value per square foot of £846 and a net initial yield of around 5.2%."

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