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Council buys ‘Monopoly’ warehouse for £2.78m

South Somerset District Council has added the UK distribution hub of toy giant Hasbro – famous for brands like Monopoly and My Little Pony – to its growing property portfolio.

The local authority has bought the building on Reevesland Industrial Estate in Newport for £2.78m.

Hasbro is the largest toymaker in the world and among its products are Monopoly, G.I. Joe, Furby, Transformers, Nerf, My Little Pony, Twister and the Power Rangers franchise.

According to the council, the remainder of the estate is owned by Hasbro, which means the tenant is far more secure and likely to remain in this location.

The deal was made possible with assistance from leading global real estate consultants CBRE and regional law firm Moore Blatch.

‘Reevesland Industrial Estate is an excellent value property providing much needed inexpensive storage space in a market where precious little industrial stock is available,’ said portfolio holder, Cllr John Clark.

‘We’re also pleased that there is room for rental growth, which will increase the capital value of the property and the rental income to the council in future.

‘This investment is the latest success in achieving the commercial strategy for generating income to continue the provision of public services.  We are pleased to report that our investments to date and projected gross and net returns are all on target,’ he added.

Like many other local authorities, South Somerset has turned to commercial property to make up a shortfall in the money it receives from Westminster.

In a statement, the council said it has seen its central grant funding drop by 70% since 2010 and it believes ‘further reductions are likely in the future’.

It has created a commercial services and income generation team, which has been set a target of generating £2m in annual income.

The council’s property portfolio also includes a business park in Christchurch, which was bought for £7.05m and the Bell House office block in Milton Keynes, which cost £2.92m.

Bell House is currently let to four tenants, including regional solicitors Howes Percival LLP, and situated in a modern business park environment half a mile from Milton Keynes Central station.

Last week, New Start reported that Wokingham Borough Council has bought a local Waitrose store in Twyford, Berkshire in a deal worth around £15m.

The local authority has purchased the supermarket site on a 20-year lease with 2% fixed annual increases for £14.87m.

Photo Credit – Bru-nO (Pixabay)

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