Topland Group, the private real estate investor which also provides structured finance, completed four bridging loans totalling more than £50 million in December 2015.
The firm, which is led by CEO Sol Zakay, provided the loans for an average period of nine months and with an average loan-to-value of 65 percent. The four schemes have a combined gross development value (GDV) of more than £250 million and three are yet to secure planning consent.
Topland provided a £22.5 million six-month loan to a private overseas investor to finance the proposed conversion of a former police station close to Chelsea’s Sloane Avenue into luxury flats. The 23,153 sq ft building is located on Lucan Place, SW3. The borrower paid more than £45 million for the site and is working up plans for a scheme with a GDV in excess of £150 million. Topland provided the loan within two weeks at a rate of 5.5% per year.
The loans also included finance to fund the former Westminster fire station, which the borrower also hopes to convert to prime residential. A further two bridging loans for £20m were completed within a week to a high-end residential developer.
“We are seeing an increasing number of clients coming to us with deals which have a focus on public sector buildings,” said Topland structured finance manager, Edward Matthews.
“Given the cost cutting agenda being pushed from national and local government this is only likely to continue. We are well positioned to capitalise this trend as these transactions often have a strong element of planning risk. This is something most other lenders are uncomfortable with,” Matthews added.