The Bullring owner Hammerson to buy smaller rival Intu Properties, all the three shopping centres in Nottingham is to be sold for £3.4 billion to create a £21 billion company. The Hammerson owns the Highcross shopping centre in Leicester. Intu owns the Victoria Centre and Broadmarsh malls in Nottingham, as well as the intu Derby centre.
The move casts doubt on the redevelopment on the Broadmarsh centre, for which a planning application had been targeted before Christmas.
The combined group will be led by Hammerson boss David Atkins and chaired by David Tyler.
In a statement released this morning, Hammerson said “create a pan-European portfolio of high-quality retail and leisure destinations, with enhanced exposure to high-growth markets and which will benefit from evolving consumer trends”.
Shareholders will vote on the deal next year, with Intu having already secured 50% of investor support for the all-paper deal.
Mr Tyler said: “This transaction will deliver real value for shareholders.
“The financial strength of the enlarged group and its strong leadership team will make it well-placed to take advantage of higher growth opportunities on a pan-European scale.”
John Strachan, chairman of Intu, said: “A combination of both Intu and Hammerson will create a more resilient, diversified and stronger group that we believe will benefit all our stakeholders.
“Intu offers high-quality retail and leisure destinations in the UK and Spain, which when merged with Hammerson’s own top-quality assets in the UK, in France and in Ireland, present a highly attractive proposition for retailers and shoppers in Europe’s leading cities.”