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$300m surge for Brisbane’s office tower market

Friday, February 15, 2019 Brisbane’s office market is starting the year with a series of major towers worth more than $300 million in play and investors looking to expand their holdings.

Big players Growthpoint, Charter Hall, M&G and ARA bought in the city last year and, in the latest move, Fortius Funds Management and two private funds run by BlackRock have put 201 Charlotte Street on the block.

The A-grade tower in the heart of the Golden Triangle in Brisbane’s CBD could reap offers of about $140m, with the 16-storey building tipped to draw local and offshore players.

Justin Bond of Knight Frank and Flint Davidson of CBRE are marketing the property, which Fortius bought for $81.5m in 2015.

Anchor tenant, resources company Anglo American, recently extended the bulk of its space in the 13,291sq m building until 2028.

A refurbishment also drew tenants including Zurich, Urbane Homes, Credit Sense and Inter­Financial Corporate Finance.

Mr Bond said interest had been strong in Brisbane, particularly for CBD assets, with infrastructure investment, population growth and a strengthening economy attracting buyers, along with the affordability of the city compared to southern capitals.

Elsewhere in the city, Brisbane’s former Wedding Cake building at 310 Ann Street, which once housed Suncorp, is on the block via JLL and CBRE. After the bank left in 2015, the building was overhauled by Cornerstone Properties, which bought it for $63m in 2011. That saw the tower lifted to 18,500sq m with Allianz Worldwide Partners and the Queensland government as tenants, with the property tipped to sell for more than $200m.

Meanwhile, developers are already chasing Brisbane’s historic Edison Exchange that Telstra put on the block via Knight Frank’s Mr Bond. The property at 280 Elizabeth Street is being sold with a seven-year lease, plus a one-year option to the telco.

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