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Hwa Hong buys half of London building

A UNIT of Hwa Hong Corporation has bought half of a freehold commercial property in London's Clerkenwell area that is worth £24.8 million, it said in a Singapore Exchange filing Monday morning.

The Hwa Hong unit, Singapore Warehouse Company, did this by taking a 50 per cent stake in a vehicle, Capital Herbal Limited (CHL). This vehicle inked a deal with an "unrelated third party" to buy the Clerkenwell property for £24.8 million cash in total or roughly S$47.37 million, it said.

The property, at 3-7 Herbal Hill, has a total floor area of about 32,935 square feet and consists of seven floors of office accommodation.

The other shareholders in CHL are Langland Estates, which has a 5 per cent interest, and DR Trust which holds the remaining 45 per cent stake.

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The property acquisition will be funded by bank loans and loans from the three shareholders in CHL based on their ownership proportion, Hwa Hong said, adding that Singapore Warehouse Company would extend a loan of around £7.5 million to CHL.

The building had been leased to Guardian News and Media for 15 years from June 2004 to June 2019, according to the webpage of British real estate broker Michael Elliott.

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