KUALA LUMPUR: The Employees Provident Fund (EPF) is not bidding for the Battersea power station in London but it has been approached by companies that have tendered for the property to offer financing, said an official.
It was reported that EPF is poised to snatch the Battersea power station from London-based football club Chelsea FC with an offer worth STG375 million (RM1.84 billion).
According to the Financial Times, EPF is in late-stage negotiations with Ernst & Young and Knight Frank, which are running the sale.
EPF deputy chief executive officer for investment, Datuk Shahril Ridza Ridzuan, told Business Times that it was looking for properties in London but not the Battersea power station.
“We are not bidding for it. The report is wrong. All I can say is that we have been approached by companies who are bidding for it to be their financial partner,” Shahril said, without disclosing names.
EPF is believed to be negotiating with British supermarket chain Sainsbury for the purchase of its distribution centre outside central London for RM400 million, and two more properties there for a combined RM1.5 billion.
The acquisitions are part of EPF’s plan to invest up to RM5 billion in the British capital’s property market.
The Battersea power station is a highly sought after asset as investors compete over land in one of the world’s top financial centres.
The site has been the subject of several failed takeover bids, including plans to turn it into a theme park, a concert venue and an office development.
SP Setia, Malaysia’s largest listed property developer by revenue, was said to be making a fresh bid for the 15.78ha site after its redevelopment plans were rejected last year.
There were reports stating that EPF is expected to join forces with SP Setia and RREEF, Deutsche Bank’s real estate arm, to convert the site into a mixed development worth close to RM7 billion.
Chelsea’s Russian owner Roman Abramovich allegedly is bidding for the Battersea power station, built in the 1930s, to turn it into a 60,000-seat stadium for his club.
According to a report by property researchers CoStar, the bid from Chelsea was significantly less than that from EPF and SP Setia.
Source by: Business Times
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