SP Setia Eyeing Other London Sites in Case Battersea Bid Fails
SP Setia Bhd., (SPSB) Malaysia’s biggest publicly traded property developer by sales, will seek to buy other London development sites if its bid for Battersea Power Station fails, Chief Executive Officer Liew Kee Sin said.
SP Setia is one of three remaining bidders for the landmark power station, Europe’s largest brick building, Liew told reporters at the Invest Malaysia conference in Kuala Lumpur today. The defunct station, featured on the cover of the 1977 Pink Floyd album “Animals,” is about 2.2 miles (3.5 kilometers) from the Houses of Parliament and has been vacant for almost 30 years.
“Win or lose, it doesn’t matter,” Liew said. “If we win, we have a project in London. If we lose, we start all over again and look for another.”
The derelict 38-acre (15-hectare) site on the south bank of the River Thames was put on sale in February after its owners failed to pay lenders owed more than 500 million pounds ($785 million). At least 10 offers were made to buy the site, including one from Russian billionaire Roman Abramovich’s Chelsea Football Club Ltd., a person familiar with the matter said earlier this month.
Planning permission was granted to Real Estate Opportunities Plc (REO), controlled by Irish developer Treasury Holdings Ltd., last year for a 5.5 billion-pound redevelopment of the station. SP Setia tried to buy the debt related to the power station in November for 262 million pounds and the offer was rejected.
Creditors led by Lloyds Banking Group Plc (LLOY) and Ireland’s National Asset Management Agency put the REO units that owned the site into administration, a U.K. type of bankruptcy reorganization, in December after they failed to pay lenders.