Intu’s Trafford Centre is seeking a buyer as lender pressure ammounts to auction plans

Intu’s Trafford Centre is seeking a buyer, according to reports from Sky News and the Retail Gazette, after the shopping centre owner filed for administration earlier this year. Recognised as the UK’s fourth-biggest shopping centre, Trafford Centre has drafted in PJT Partners and CBRE to oversee the sales process.

Located in Manchester, the Trafford Centre draws around 30 million visitors every year. Pressure from the centre’s biggest lender has reportedly culminated in the decision to auction it off in the coming weeks.

Intu owns 17 shopping centres including Lakeside in Essex and has been hammered by the Covid-19 crisis in recent months. The pandemic has left retailers struggling to pay rents as fewer customers visited stores.

Trafford Centre was last valued publicly by Intu at close to £1.7 billion, but is expected by analysts to be sold for at least 20 per cent less than the original price. Intu’s joint administrators have said they are working constructively together to “maximise value for this highly attractive asset”.

PJT had been advising the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB), the single-biggest lender in the Trafford Centre capital structure, before Intu filed for administration last month.

When KPMG was drafted in, Intu directly employed nearly 3000 people, with a further 102,000 working in its UK shopping centres.

About Robert Hutchins

Robert Hutchins is the editor of Licensing.biz and ToyNews. Hutchins has worked his way up from Staff Writer to the position of Editor across the two titles, having spent almost eight years with both ToyNews and Licensing.biz, and what now seems like a lifetime surrounded by toys. You can contact him by emailing robert.hutchins@biz-media.co.uk or calling him on 0203 143 8780 You can even follow him on Twitter @RobGHutchins if ranting is your thing...

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