Fiera Real Estate and Wrenbridge acquire 4.5-acre site in Portsmouth for a £33m ESG Exemplar Grade A industrial scheme

Fiera Real Estate (“FRE UK”) and Wrenbridge are pleased to announce the acquisition of a 4.5-acre site on Limberline Road in Portsmouth to develop a multi-unit Grade A industrial scheme with a GDV in the region of £33m. The business plan is to obtain planning permission for seven industrial units ranging between 6,319 sq.ft to 29,785 sq.ft. The scheme will have a total area of 109,312 sq.ft.

The site was purchased through the Fiera Real Estate Opportunity Fund V UK (“FREOF V UK”), the latest fund in FRE UK’s programmatic venture series with CBRE Investment Management (“CBRE IM”). This is the 17th acquisition for the FREOF V UK, which reached its final close earlier this year with £180m of capital and is targeting similar sites for industrial development around the UK.

Sustainability and wellbeing considerations will be a focal point of the new scheme, which is targeting BREEAM Excellent and an EPC A rating. It will offer high efficiency heating and cooling systems, water-saving fixtures and fittings and PV panels will be fixed to all buildings. During construction, the scheme will promote the use of locally sourced goods and low-emitting carbon materials, as well as ensuring that the contractors are part of the Considerate Contractor Scheme.

The scheme is located within the Limberline & Ackworth Road Industrial Estate, which is an established industrial location in Portsmouth and home to a number of blue-chip occupiers including Lidl, Dulux and The Range. The city is undergoing a major transformation with over £1bn being invested in or committed to its infrastructure, amenities and new commercial developments.

The site benefits from excellent transport connections with direct links to the A3(M) and M27 within three minutes’ drive. The site also neighbours the local Hilsea rail station by direct cycle and pedestrian access and train times to London Waterloo are typically under 1 hour 45 minutes.  

Demand for distribution warehouses has remained very robust across the UK, with the South Coast currently viewed as one of the strongest sub-sectors in the market. The market resilience has resulted in positive rental growth, fuelled by the combination of a demand/supply imbalance and the requirement to be located close to the customer. The new Grade A scheme will help fill the gap in the lack of existing Grade A mid-sized supply in the local area. 

Chris Button, Fund Manager at FRE UK, commented: “we are very pleased to be bringing forward yet another high-quality and sustainable scheme alongside our Operating Partner, Wrenbridge. This is the latest acquisition for our value-add fund, FREOF V UK, which currently has a pipeline of more than 1.5million sq.ft. of industrial and logistics space. The fund is targeting similar sites for speculative industrial development around the UK”.

Will Jarman, Associate Director at Wrenbridge commented: “we are delighted to secure this prominent site in Portsmouth and view this transaction as the first of many within a strategic push towards the M27 corridor on the South Coast. We are in discussions with occupiers on pre-lets as we plan to bring forward a highly sustainable scheme to the area. Wrenbridge and Fiera have significant capital to deploy into the industrial and logistics sector across our key geographies, with the South Coast now also firmly in focus”.

Russell Mogridge at Vail Williams acted for the vendor and Nick Tutton, CBRE for Wrenbridge, both of which are reappointed as letting agents for further enquiries.