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UBS London HQ bought up by Hong Kong investment firm in £1bn deal

UBS offices in the City of London (Philip Toscano/PA) Photo: PA Wire/PA Images

UBS’s London headquarters has been snapped up by a Hong Kong property investment firm in a £1 billion deal.

The building at 5 Broadgate has been sold by British Land and GIC to a subsidiary of Li Ka-shing’s CK Asset Holdings, where the tycoon is still an advisor.

British Land originally took joint ownership of the site back in 2012, committing to develop the new location of the UBS global investment banking business.

The building was completed in 2015, helping British Land pocket returns of 18% per year.

Gerald Ma, a member of CK Asset Holding’s executive committee, said: “5 Broadgate is a great quality asset with a high quality tenant, and we are delighted with this investment.”

British Land shares were down 0.3% following the news.

It is the latest London office building to be picked up by Asian investors in recent months.

Chinese investment group Hengli Investments Holding Group last year signed a 20-year lease on Lloyds Banking Group’s headquarters for an undisclosed sum.

That deal came shortly after Cheung Kei Group forked out £270 million for a Canary Wharf tower that lets to businesses including US banking giant JP Morgan as well as Time Inc, American Express, Balfour Beatty and Cision Gorkana.

The company bought the site, at 5 Churchill Place, from Said holdings.

Hong Kong food conglomerate Lee Kum Kee earlier spent £1.3 billion buying out Canary Wharf Group’s and Land Securities’s 50% stakes in the “Walkie Talkie” skyscraper in June.

London’s landmark “Cheesegrater” building was also sold to the investment vehicle of Chinese property magnate Cheung Chung Kiu for £1.15 billion.