Ocean Plaza retail

The retail side of Ocean Plaza in Southport has been bought by property investment company M Core in a multi-million pound deal. 

The leisure part of the site is unaffected by the sale.

It is the second major investment by the firm, which announced this week that it has also bought the Central 12 retail park on Derby Road in Southport for a deal believed to be worth £27 million. 

Ocean Plaza, located on the seafront next to Marine Drive and Southport Pier, comprises 95,107 sq ft of retail, anchored by Dunelm and Matalan, Pizza Hut and Pets at Home. 

Adjacent is a separate 117,165 sq ft leisure park with an eight-screen Vue cinema, health and fitness centre, and a 20-lane tenpin bowling alley, which is unaffected by the sale.

It was acquired for an undisclosed sum in an off-market deal.

James Buchanan, managing director of the LCP Group, which is part of M Core, said: 

“We’ve long demonstrated an appetite for investing in retail parades and centres throughout the UK, and this is not abating. 

“Not only are these superb investments, acquisitions such as Ocean Plaza retail also provide us with a good opportunity to add value.

“We have a healthy pipeline of acquisitions coming down the line, which will only add to our growing reputation as one of the most acquisitive businesses when it comes to investing in commercial property. 

“It’s a strategy that has served us well for the past five years and we are sufficiently flexible to be able to adapt quickly to the challenges many occupiers and organisations are facing.”

Barry Flint, LCP director, said: 

“Our experienced intensive asset management teams understand the market and our local teams have an in-depth knowledge of the communities they work in. 

“Together, this means we can target the right kinds of tenants, whether they are high street names or independent traders, to the right place for them.

“It’s a strategy that works and it’s why we have a black book of contacts, waiting to locate to our centres. 

“We look forward to announcing new tenants soon.”

M Core has invested more than £373m across 61 properties in just over two years within commercial real estate, predominantly in retail in its UK portfolio. Major acquisitions include Cwmbran Centre, Cwmbran; The Galleries, Washington, Sunderland; Aviemore Retail Park, and Three Spires in Lichfield.

The solicitor for M Core was Catherine Gunz at Osborne Clarke and agent was Simon Lewis of Lewis Ellis. The agent for the vendor was Morgan Williams.


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