Shopping centre transaction activity goes up

October 9th, 2012 Category: Building Management

Shopping centre transaction activity in the UK has gone up in the last few months, a new report has revealed.

According to figures from Knight Frank, shopping centres worth £390 million in total were transacted between April and June 2012.

However, the overall figure went up to £710 million during the following three-month period.

Bruce Nutman, partner and head of retail investment at Knight Frank, said: "In retrospect, the market quietened down in the early summer and, post the Olympics, we are beginning to see signs of increased activity from both vendors and purchasers."

The biggest transaction during the third quarter of 2012 took place in Hampshire, with TIAA-CREF spending about £280 million on Festival Place Shopping Centre in Basingstoke.

Knight Frank said this deal provided the commercial property market with "good evidence of current pricing for dominant prime assets in the south-east".

The organisation also noted that investor sentiment in the prime and good secondary segments of the market has picked up in the last few months.

As a result, Knight Frank is confident more and more investors will "seek to exploit current pricing levels" and potentially fuel an upturn in the market.

With the south-east leading the way, this could drive up demand for facilities management specialists in the region.

Experts in cleaning large-scale commercial properties can be particularly useful in shopping centres, as they have the experience, skills and resources to do an effective job of keeping the facility safe, clean and well-presented.

As a result, retailers and managers can get on with the job of providing a first-class service to their customers.

Mr Nutman added that estimated rental values are proving to be particularly big priorities to buyers at the moment, which means many are heavily "focused upon equivalent yields".

He said they have a better understanding of "true rents" than they once did, which can be highly beneficial when it comes to selecting the right stock.