The original home of Midland Bank – on the border of the city’s financial and civic areas – has changed hands in a £1.575 million deal.
Paul Bassi’s quoted Real Estate Investors has added its tenth Birmingham city centre office building with the purchase of the former Midland Bank building at 33 Bennetts Hill.
The AIM-listed property investment business fought off stiff competition for the listed landmark building which was formerly the original branch of the bank now HSBC plc.
REI paid cash for the 8,127 sq ft building which was designed by Thomas Rickman and completed in 1835.
The building was acquired from the receivers GVA, acting on behalf of Royal Bank of Scotland.
REI chief executive Paul Bassi said: “As asset values rise and regional property becomes increasingly sought after, notably by Chinese and Singapore institutional and corporate buyers, cities like Birmingham and Manchester are well placed to take advantage of more money coming into the marketplace.
“There were several bidders interested in this building but REI’s track record and ability to complete in cash continues to give us preferred buyer status among the banks and institutions.”
REI recently announced record profits of £5 million and a doubling of its dividend in its 2013 year end final accounts.
Last month the firm raised £20 million in a placing among leading city investors.
REI now has a prime Birmingham city centre portfolio with a value approaching £50 million, all bought during the downturn.
Mr Bassi added: “This historic and unique building is an excellent addition to our growing City centre portfolio. We are already in discussions with a high profile occupier, and hope to announce a letting in the near future. Additionally we have numerous acquisitions and lettings in the hands of the lawyers.”