One of the standout commercial real estate transactions completed in Ireland in 2020 was the sale of Phoenix House in Dublin 8 by Henley – Bartra, the joint venture between Henley, the global private equity real estate investor, and Bartra Capital, the Irish development group.
This office property was acquired by Henley Bartra in 2018 from Ryanair. At the time three of the five floors were vacant and the remaining floors were let to the State’s Office of Public Works (OPW). Henley Bartra invested over €1m in a comprehensive refurbishment and upgrade of the building. Subsequently all three vacant floors were let to the OPW under a new 10-year lease. The result was a fully let world class office facility, in a premium Dublin city location.
The sale process was conducted by TWM with a price of c. €16m achieved. Given the secure long-term State underwritten income there was strong interest and competition from investors. The lot size was attractive to private investors seeking a secure income stream with a good income return. The purchasers were ultimately private Irish Investors. The sale price of c. €16m provides the new owner with a net initial income return of 5.75%.
Justin Meissel, Chief Investment Officer of Henley, said: “This sale represents the culmination of our joint business plan for the property, having successfully implemented the value-added asset management initiatives established when it was acquired. We remain opportunistically focused on further investment in the Irish capital, in collaboration with our on the ground partner, Bartra, with a focus on attractive off-market acquisitions in Dublin that can provide compelling risk-adjusted returns for our investors.”
Despite these uncertain times Henley Bartra are actively seeking further opportunities to grow their portfolio. Bartra’s Commercial Real Estate Director Paul McGrath said “Despite these unprecedented times Henley Bartra is very much open for business, with all our services fully operational. We are committed to continuing to provide a world class service to our investors and we are hungry for further opportunities to expand in the Irish market.”