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Heron Tower Said to Get Refinancing Deal to Avert Sale

Oct. 2 (Bloomberg) -- The owners of Heron Tower, one of the City of London financial district’s tallest skyscrapers, reached a 370 million-pound ($600 million) refinancing deal that includes a new loan from Starwood Capital Group LLC, a person with knowledge of the matter said.

Starwood Capital will provide a 270 million-pound loan and the tower’s three equity partners will put in 100 million pounds of new equity, said the person, who asked not to be identified because the matter is private. The deal means it won’t be necessary to sell the tower to pay a 315 million-pound loan owed to banks led by Wells Fargo & Co.

The 46-story tower’s owners, including developer Heron International Ltd. and the State General Reserve of Oman Fund, had been unable to agree on how to repay debt attached to the building, a person with knowledge of the matter said last month. Citigroup Inc. and Starwood Capital Group were among several companies that had offered to refinance the loans, that person said.

Tom Johnson, a Starwood Capital spokesman, and Emma Kane, a spokeswoman for Heron International who works for Redleaf Polhill, declined to comment on the refinancing.

Members of the Saudi royal family also own a stake in the Heron Tower. The building, which opened in March 2011, has tenants accounting for about 60 percent of its space as of September, according to Heron International.

More leasing agreements are being signed in central London as tenants that delayed a move during the financial crisis begin to seek new space. More than 7.4 million square feet (688,000 square meters) of office space was leased during the year through September, 165,000 square feet more than in the whole of 2012, broker Cushman & Wakefield Inc. said on Sept. 30.

To contact the reporters on this story: Francine Lacqua in London at flacqua@bloomberg.net; Jeffrey St.Onge in London at jstonge@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Andrew Blackman at ablackman@bloomberg.net

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