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UK's Landsec sells London office property to Blackstone for $263 million

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FILE PHOTO: The ticker and trading information for Blackstone Group is displayed at the post where it is traded on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange
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(Reuters) - UK's Land Securities Group Plc said on Friday that it has agreed to sell Harbour Exchange, a London office property, to Blackstone Inc for 196.5 million pounds ($262.82 million) as the commercial landlord reshuffles its portfolio.

Many UK commercial landlords are looking to diversify into mixed-use properties and focus on higher-return opportunities as the pandemic erodes the valuations of retail and office spaces, and an extended moratorium on rent hurts their income streams.

"Through this (Harbour Exchange) disposal, we are recycling capital into opportunities where we can bring to bear Landsec's skills and expertise to drive growth and returns for our investors," said Marcus Geddes, managing director, Central London, at Landsec.

Harbour Exchange, located in the Docklands area, comprises two redeveloped office buildings, housing datacentre and office space, and was let to Equinix (UK) Ltd with an unexpired lease term of nearly 20 years.

Landsec said the completion of the Harbour Exchange sale to Blackstone European Property Income Fund will take place before the end of the year.

Last week, Landsec said it had bought a 75% stake in MediaCity, the UK's biggest tech and media hub outside London, for $580 million, just two days after it announced the purchase of regeneration firm U+I for $260 million. [L4N2RU1BV]

($1 = 0.7477 pounds)

(Reporting by Aby Jose Koilparambil in Bengaluru; Editing by Shailesh Kuber)

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