The largest single commercial property transaction to take place in Northern Ireland in recent years has seen Wirefox Investment Group buy CastleCourt shopping centre in Belfast for £125m from Hermes Fund Managers. Wirefox is a Northern Irish-based investment firm with a portfolio of assets across the United Kingdom and Ireland.
CastleCourt shopping centre opened in 1990, becoming Belfast’s first major shopping centre with 340,000 sq ft of space housing more than 100 retailers. Located on Royal Avenue at the heart of Belfast’s retail district, the centre, anchored by Debenhams, draws an annual footfall in excess of 12.5m, and also has the city’s largest car park, with 1,600 spaces. Other retailers based at the centre include Boots, Argos, Vodafone, Toys R Us, Dorothy Perkins, Jack & Jones and Costa.
Savills advised the purchaser and Ben Turtle, head of office at Savills Northern Ireland, said: “Despite the shock of Brexit and ongoing political uncertainty, the retail sector in Northern Ireland continues to perform strongly, with positive retailer performances and robust letting activity. With consumer confidence at its highest level since the third quarter of 2015, and the economy expected to grow at a faster rate than previously predicted, we expect Wirefox to reap the benefits of this high-profile acquisition.”