Hammerson Plc, the U.K.’s third-largest publicly traded property company, was appointed by Royal London Asset Management Ltd. and Irish Bank Resolution Corp.’s IBRC Assurance unit to manage and redevelop the Whitgift Centre shopping mall in south London.
The mall has about 580,000 square feet (53,900 square meters) of retail space and attracts about 28 million shoppers a year, Royal London and IBRC said in statement today. Westfield Group, the Australian developer with two malls in London, held talks to become a partner last month.
Hammerson bought Centrale Shopping Centre, another mall in Croydon, for 98 million pounds ($130 million) last year. IBRC’s private clients purchased 50 percent of the Whitgift Centre in 2005 and may miss payments on a 171 million-pound loan used to make the purchase, the bank said in a report to investors obtained by Bloomberg News last month.
Combining Centrale and Whitgift “will create a unique opportunity to bring about a game-changing event for the benefit the whole town,” Royal London and Dublin-based IBRC said in the statement.
“We have a vision to kick start the much needed retail-led regeneration of Croydon,” Lawrence Hutchings, London-based Hammerson’s U.K. retail managing director, said in an e-mail.