A landmark office building in London’s West End owned by Legal & General Investment Management Real Assets (LGIMRA) and Mitsubishi Estate London has been sold to Google for $1bn (€864m).

LGIMRA said the Central Saint Giles Limited Partnership, its 50:50 joint venture with Mitsubishi, has sold the Central Saint Giles office development to the tech giant, an existing tenant. Other major occupiers include NBC Universal and Mindshare.

The LGIMRA and Mitsubishi venture developed and had owned the asset for more than 10 years.

Situated adjacent to Tottenham Court Road underground station, the Central Saint Giles mixed-use development is formed of three buildings surrounding a central, public piazza. The asset offers 408,000sqft of office space with 25,000sqft of restaurants and cafes at ground floor level.

Ruth Porat, SVP and CFO of Google and Alphabet, said the acquisition of the Central Saint Giles development reflects the firm’s continued ”commitment to the country’s growth and success”.

”Our focus remains on creating flexible workspaces that foster innovation, creativity and inclusivity. We look forward to deepening our connection to the UK as we build for the future of work.”

Bill Hughes, the head of real assets for LGIM, said: “The sale is a strong sign of continued demand for the highest quality central London office space. It represents an excellent outcome for our investors, derived from consistently high-quality asset management by our team over the past decade, to deliver on the business plan for Central Saint Giles.

“We are pleased to have concluded the deal off-market with Google, which knows the asset well and saw the potential to invest longer-term in an exceptional building.”

Yuichiro Shioda, managing director and CEO of Mitsubishi Estate London, said: “Mitsubishi Estate London has been involved with Central Saint Giles since the development phase, and this sale is the culmination of one of our flagship projects.

“Its acquisition by Google, a company renowned for occupying only the very best buildings, is a fitting legacy for one of the West End’s most successful and recognisable developments. We remain committed to London offices, through new opportunities as well as existing schemes.”

Responding to the news, Gavin Vollans, real estate partner at law firm Katten Muchin Rosenman UK, said: “This reinvestment by Google in London echos the sentiments of a large number of investors who maintain their unwavering belief in the London office market.

“The pull factor that London offers to existing and new entrants to the London office market ensures that the future of the office is as strong now as it was before the pandemic.”

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