Legal & General has appointed the DTZ agency to market the Strand offices of Coutts & Co bank. The aristocratic finance house was founded in 1692 and is considered to be one of the world’s oldest banks. Although, the wealth management group is now owned by the Royal Bank of Scotland, it still has the honour of being the Queen’s private banker.
Founded in 1692, Coutts is considered to be one of the world’s oldest banks and has had a long association with the Strand. The firm is headquartered within a renovated period building that is just across the Strand from Charing Cross railway station.
The wealth management group is owned by the Royal Bank of Scotland, but is most famous for being the Queen’s private banker. Fittingly, Queen Elizabeth II attended the re-opening ceremony in 1978.
440 Strand has been the headquarters of Coutts bank since 1904 and this will be the first time the entire building has been put up for sale.
Designed by the architect John Nash, the Regency terrace was refurbished in the 1970s to provide 180,480 sq ft of modern business space.
The triangular building provides 138,290 sq ft of WC2 office space that has been leased by Royal Bank of Scotland Group plc until 2037.
Legal & General had only recently acquired the West End office rental from Telereal Trillium as part of the Hyperion portfolio.
Graham Precey of L&G commented on the transaction:
"in order to meet the scale of investment required to purchase this rare portfolio on behalf of its annuity business, L&G Retirement, it used combined investment from its shareholder funds, L&G Capital, on behalf of whom this asset is now being returned to the market".
The £550m purchase was completed in March this year and comprised 55 separate assets. With the sale of 440 Strand, L&G will hope to recoup almost a third of the investment in record time.