08  Feb 2018

Ask and the Richardson family lead funding of 750,000 First Street office development

Ask Real Estate (Ask), the Richardson Family and PATRIZIA UK have formed a new Joint Venture to bring forward the remaining office development plots at First Street in Manchester City Centre.

The joint venture, which is majority owned by Ask and Richardson, will own land with the capacity to deliver in excess of 750,000 sq ft of flexible and modern Grade A office accommodation. Up to four phases of development are planned which will target a range of businesses with similar characteristics to those who have already chosen First Street as their Manchester base. Companies such as Auto Trader Group, Ford Credit Europe, Jacobs Engineering, Amaze Digital and Gazprom have helped to create a thriving business environment at this location.

PATRIZIA will continue to own or manage the leisure and retail space as well as a major residential development site at First Street.

John Hughes, Managing Director of Ask Real Estate, said: “Building on First Street’s success as a well-established neighbourhood and one of Manchester’s favourite places, we welcome the opportunity to further expand the commercial element of the estate through our joint venture with Richardson and PATRIZIA.

“At a time when Manchester’s economy continues to grow, and new office space in the most sought after parts of the city centre is constrained, we are confident that First Street’s reputation as an exciting neighbourhood where people want to work and spend time will continue to grow.”

Mark Morgan, Richardson’s Head of Real Estate commented: “Following the family’s recent investment into Ask, we are delighted to quickly conclude this transaction. Delivery of the next phases of development will boost the existing community and add to the unique characteristics of this part of the city.”

James Muir, Managing Director of PATRIZIA UK and Ireland, said: “Following our investment in First Street in 2015, our commitment has been a driving force in creating a vibrant hub for the city, including attracting new businesses and bringing in new and exciting restaurants.

“This injection of capital by Ask and Richardson alongside ourselves, will enable the creation of new office space and further supports our shared vision for First Street.”

Manchester City Council Leader, Sir Richard Leese, added: “The appeal of First Street to potential office occupiers is now well established. As well as supporting existing jobs, this further development will help attract other companies to this important gateway site into the city, and is on track to create up to 10,000 jobs. Manchester’s ambition to become a global leader is stronger than ever, and I am confident that following this announcement, the pace of delivering the next phases of office development at First Street will accelerate significantly.”