Sterling snaps up Birmingham development and Nottingham scheme in £236m haul

20th June 2024 | Jack Oliver

A mixed-use canalside development in Birmingham and a hotel-led scheme in Nottingham have been acquired by Sterling Property Ventures in a £236m deal.

Water’s Edge at Brindleyplace, Birmingham and Chapel Bar in Nottingham have been purchased as part of a larger portfolio from British Airways Pension Trustees.

Water’s Edge is a 62,000 sq ft canalside restaurant and bar development, comprising 12 units fully let to operators including All Bar One, Wagamama, Cosy Club, and Slug and Lettuce.

The scheme had been under the ownership of British Airways since its completion in 1994.

James Howarth, Sterling’s managing director, said: “Sterling now has three significant assets in Birmingham. The Water’s Edge enjoys a prominent location at Brindleyplace, opposite the International Convention Centre and close to the National Sea Life Centre and Utilita Arena.  It is one of the best performing regional restaurant/bar schemes in the UK.”

Chapel Bar in Nottingham sits near the city’s Old Market Square, and includes a 120-bed Premier Inn hotel, five retail and leisure units, and office space.

The larger portfolio acquired by Sterling includes the 449,079 sq ft Hempstead Valley retail and leisure scheme in Gillingham, and three retail warehouses totalling 74,060 sq ft in Longwell Green, Bristol.

The portfolio also includes two distribution units and two Grade A office buildings.

The properties – which are held under freehold or long leases – generate a combined income of over £18.5m, and will be managed within Sterling’s SPV Endeavour.

The acquisition is Sterling’s second of the year, after purchasing the Birmingham headquarters of Mitchell & Butlers from Legal & General.

James Howarth added: “Our plan is to have a minimum of £1billion of assets under management. Acquiring a property portfolio from British Airways Pensions is a significant stepping stone towards that target. We are seeking high quality assets, ideally with the opportunity to add value, allowing us to bring our skills to bear. As this latest purchase demonstrates, we are sector agnostic.”

Fund manager BlackRock acted on behalf of British Airways Pension Trustees Limited, with joint agents ACRE Capital, Morgan Williams, and Capital Real Estate Partners handling the sale.

Knight Frank and HP Four acted for Sterling.


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