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British Land Buys Tesco's 50% Stake In South East London Shopping Centre

Real estate investment trust British Land Co. Plc. (BLND.L,BTLCY.PK,BRLAF.PK) Thursday said it has purchased joint venture partner Tesco Plc's (TSCDY.PK, TSCO.L) 50 percent holding in the 300,000 sq. ft. Surrey Quays Shopping Centre for 48 million pounds. Following the purchase, British Land's ownership in the centre will be 100 percent.

British Land had bought its original 50 percent stake in the Shopping Centre in 2009. Surrey Quays Shopping Centre in Canada Water, South East London is anchored by a 115,000 sq. ft. Tesco Extra.

The company said the acquisition follows its 493 million pounds share placing recently, which has given it additional capacity to more investment opportunities.

As part of the deal, Tesco has committed to a new long-term lease on its store and the petrol filling station, which account for a significant part of the centre's income. This will increase the weighted average lease length of the centre to 9.4 years.

British Land noted that it intends to progress plans in 2014 for a 38 million pounds upgrade of the shopping centre. This will include a 100,000 sq. ft extension, refurbishment of the existing centre along with improvements to public spaces and connections to Surrey Quays and Canada Water tube and bus stations.

Separately, British Land said it has reached key milestone in the redevelopment of the 14.57 acre Harmsworth Quays printing works site in Canada Water, South East London and Southwark Council has approved for the Daily Mail General Trust to assign its leasehold interest in the site to British Land.

BLND.L is currently trading at 552.62 pence, up 0.84 percent, on a volume of 703,759 shares on the LSE.

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by RTT Staff Writer

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