Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank on Najda Street in Abu Dhabi. Image Credit: Ahmed Kutty/Gulf News Archives

Abu Dhabi: Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank (ADIB) UK, has provided financing for The Bank of London and the Middle East (BLME) to acquire a Dh120 million (£26.95 million) Grade A office building in Edinburgh, leased to Centrica as their corporate headquarters in Scotland until 2035.

The award-winning building, which forms part of the Edinburgh Waterfront regeneration area, provides Grade A accommodation over ground and three upper floors, extending to 94,214 sqft. The building has received several design awards including the Scottish Design Award for Commercial Interior and the British Council for Offices National and Regional Awards for Commercial Workplace.

ADIB recently reported that Middle East investor appetite for UK commercial real estate assets is being driven by a desire to diversify portfolio risk, the weakened pound, attractive rental yields in the strong performing regional markets and long-term security of income. This was clearly evidenced in this latest transaction with over ten investors bidding on the property with a prevalence of Middle East based investors.

“This latest transaction is typical of demand we are seeing amongst our client base. Over the last 18 months, 70% of our financing transactions have comprised regional investments, including Aberdeen, Bristol, Coventry, Leeds & Manchester. The availability of suitable products and the competitive nature of the market is the main challenge our clients are facing, so as well as providing financing we are assisting clients with the origination of investment opportunities via our network of agents in the UK,” said Paul Maisfield, Head of UK Real Estate at ADIB UK,

BLME is a UK Shari’ah compliant bank with a branch in the Dubai International Financial Centre, regulated by the DFSA. Boubyan Bank is BLME’s largest shareholder. BLME sources and co invests in commercial real estate opportunities alongside professional investors from the Middle East.

“This is a compelling investment and aligned with our investment strategy of acquiring income generating assets with index linked rent reviews. The asset is backed by a strong tenant and we are encouraged by their commitment to the building and the continued investment and regeneration of the Edinburgh Waterfront area. The asset was acquired at an attractive price and expect to generate a steady return for our investors”, said Khaled Alanani, Head of Real Estate Investments, BLME.