Sir James Dyson has spent £26m on a prime London office block.
An investment company linked to Dyson’s Weybourne Group, which comprises the Dyson Group and Beeswax Dyson Farming, is reported to have purchased 100 Union Street in SE1.
The building, providing around 20,000 sq. ft. of high quality, BREEAM Excellent grade A office space is let to a number of businesses and is believed to generate around £1.2m in rent annually.
100 Union Street was completed in 2017. The building’s letting agents describe it as a ‘contemporary office building with the character and qualities of Bankside’s industrial past’. Constructed to an iconic contemporary design by 2015 Stirling Prize winning architects Allford Hall Monaghan Morris it features open plan interiors, exposed concrete soffit and walls, full height ‘factory style’ windows, maple timber floor tiles, acoustic decorative timber panelling, high ceilings plus a private external plaza.
The surrounding area – Tate Modern, South Bank and Borough Market are close by – is one that has become increasingly popular with creative and technology businesses. Transport hubs such as Waterloo, Southwark and London Bridge are all less than a 15 minute walk, ensuring it is one of the most accessible locations in London.
As well as being an intrepid inventor – renowned for inventing the bagless vacuum cleaner – and investor in new technology Dyson is also apparently a firm believer in the virtues of investing his money into bricks and mortar, and more specifically land.
Last year Dyson spent £130m on a prime Fitzrovia property portfolio, earning an estimated annual rental income of £3.5m.
According to this report from 2014 Sir James Dyson now owns more land in England than the Queen, the Duke of Bedford and the Duke of Marlborough.
The Who Owns England? website looks more closely at Dyson’s land holdings via Beeswax Dyson Farming. The portfolio includes Nocton Estate, Carrington Estate and Cranwell & Roxburgh Estates in Lincolnshire, Dodington Park (which is Dyson’s main home) and Ack Ack Farmyard in Gloucestershire and Churn Estate in Oxfordshire.
The site discusses Dyson’s motivation for investing in land. It says that the billionaire inventor’s estates are connected with his interests in developing renewable energy (anaerobic digestion or AD) technology. It also suggests that these holdings are significant beneficiaries of farming and other subsidies, and that putting money into such a large amount of land could also be very efficient from an Inheritance Tax point of view.
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