REAL ESTATE - ING Real Estate Finance has completed a €260m credit facility for the acquisition of 88 Wood Street, London EC2 by a co-investment partnership, it said.

The transaction involved the largest asset purchase by ING in the UK so far, ING spokesman Wieger Sietsma said.

According to ING, 88 Wood Street is a state of the art property, designed by the Richard Rogers Partnership. "It provides over 23,000 m2 over 18 floors, of some of the highest quality office space an accommodation in the City of London."

"The building is fully let. Prime tenants include Hewlett Packard and National Australia Bank."

To date, 50% of the facility has been syndicated to other banks, ING added.

"We are very pleased to have arranged a flexible tailor-made solution for this landmark office property. On Wood Street, innovative finance meets innovative architecture," said Michiel Rang, senior managing director Real Estate Finance International.

The co-investment partnership - including clients of ING Real Estate Investment Management, ING Central London Fund and clients of Arlington Property Investments - agreed to acquire 88 Wood Street of €343.4m in September last year.

Meanwhile, ING Real Estate Management announced the appointment of Max de Groot as acquisition director for Central and Eastern Europe.

De Groot, 38, joined ING in 2000 as acquisition manager for ING Dutch Retail Fund. In 2004, he moved to ING Real Estate Investment Management’s Central Europe office in Prague as an acquisition manager.

"Since then, De Groot has sourced property acquisitions totalling approximately €1bn for ING Property Fund Central Europe, and the recently established ING Property Fund Central and Eastern Europe," ING said.

In his new role, De Groot heads a team of acquisition managers operating in Poland, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, Romania and Austria.

The new acquisition director will be based in Prague, and will continue to report to William Rowson, head of acquisitions in continental Europe, at ING Real Estate in The Hague, ING added.

ING Real Estate is an international real estate company, active in investment management, development and finance. It has a total business portfolio of over €79bn and offices in 21 countries.