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ALMCOR CEO speaks to React News about plans to build a £1bn+ open storage platform

Jony Whittingham shares how to build a large portfolio in a nascent sector, first mover advantage, and how the industrial open storage market is shaping up.

Speaking to React News, ALMCOR CEO Jony Whittingham has set out a clear ambition to build an industrial outdoor storage (IOS) portfolio north of £1bn across Europe within the next three years.

“The portfolio is now more than £100m, deployed in the UK and split between single and multi-let assets,” Jony said. “We are closing our first acquisition in the Netherlands and have exclusivity on a number of assets in Iberia.”

In March, ALMCOR and joint venture partner Cerberus Capital Management announced the latest acquisition in the UK as we deployed £20m into a 30-acre multi-let industrial and open storage site at Bridgwater, South West England.

Jony explained how and why ALMCOR has identified IOS as a sector of interest: “It was apparent to us, as a consequence of the pandemic, that retailers and manufacturers would seek to secure their own supply chains via onshoring and nearshoring.

Outdoor storage, while nascent as a sector in the UK and across Europe, is essential to facilitating stable supply chains and subsequently it is a sector with a growing demand profile. That led us to exploring it as an asset class in a natural evolution of – and as an adjunct to – the overall logistics market.”

He also discussed why the partnership with Cerberus has been successful: “We had been tracking activity in the IOS sector and were aware of the Cerberus-backed platform in the US, which led us to explore how we could work together in Europe.

“We see significant opportunities to deliver both the scale and value-add returns consistent with the expectations of a valued partner like Cerberus.”

On Thames Enterprise Park, Jony described the project is a ‘once-in-a-generation’ opportunity: “It is one of the largest employment-led regeneration projects in the South East… transforming 412 acres of brownfield land on the Thames Estuary into a strategic employment and infrastructure centre, with up to 3.7m sq ft of modern, sustainable business space.

“Once the £1.2bn development is completed, it will accommodate specialised industries which want to locate within the Thames Freeport and the UK’s largest logistics cluster on the Thames Estuary.”

Thames Enterprise Park secured outline planning in 2022 and a programme of demolition and remediation to prepare the site is continuing. The latest phase of deconstruction work is a milestone in the site’s regeneration and will continue until autumn 2024.

Please find the full interview with React News here.

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ALMCOR and Cerberus complete purchase of latest UK IOS asset

JV partners announce latest deal to grow European Industrial Outdoor
Storage (EIOS) platform

ALMCOR and joint venture partner Cerberus Capital Management have announced the latest investment in their European Industrial Outdoor Storage (EIOS) platform.

The JV has deployed £20m on a 30-acre multi-let industrial and open storage site at Bridgwater, South West England. The asset offers low site coverage, a strong income base, and multiple asset management angles underpinned by excellent transport links to the M5.

This deal builds on recent platform acquisitions including Leyland Business Park in Preston, a 48-acre multi-let industrial and open storage site, and Melton Commercial Park in Melton Mowbray, a 90-acre multi-let commercial estate.

IOS assets are typically of low building site cover with a core focus on location and occupier demand from tenants mostly associated with logistics and light industrial sectors. Target sites normally benefit from easy access to major road / rail networks, marine ports or airports, and often have close proximity to established industrial and logistics zones.

The JV’s EIOS platform aims to aggregate income producing assets with the potential to generate strong returns through active asset management and the creation of a specialist sector operating model.

Peter McCluskey, Head of Active Value at ALMCOR, said: “The Bridgwater asset is another good example of our ambitions for the platform. The site has a strong tenant base, great transport links, and  offers opportunities for a transformative development programme to repurpose the estate into an institutional IOS asset.

“We continue to develop our diverse, income-producing portfolio and are actively looking for more  investment opportunities across the UK and Europe.”

Operating across Active Value and Strategic Land strategies, ALMCOR aims to identify opportunistic real estate investments driving exceptional capital returns through innovative asset management.

The transaction was carried out off-market.

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Thames Enterprise Park welcomes Mayor of Thurrock to mark regeneration milestone

The Mayor of Thurrock, Councillor Sue Little, visited Thames Enterprise Park in February to mark the start of another phase of deconstruction work at the former Coryton Oil Refinery.

The clearance works are an important step in the regeneration of the 412-acre brownfield site and the development of Thames Enterprise Park, one of the largest employment-led regeneration projects in the South East.

The Mayor was hosted by Development Director Graham Stark to mark the start of this work, to see the deconstruction process first-hand, and to meet the teams working on-site.

Specialist contractors DSM are taking down 34 previously used oil storage tanks as part of site clearance and preparation work required for development.  Across the site, above-ground structures have been decommissioned, cleaned, and then demolished or removed in phases. 

When complete, Thames Enterprise Park is projected to create 5,500 jobs and to generate £350m per year for the local economy.

Thurrock Mayor, Councillor Sue Little, said: “It was a pleasure to visit Thames Enterprise Park to see the progress being made as this new phase of decommissioning begins.  I was glad to meet the skilled, specialist teams working hard to move this project forwards.”

Graham Stark, Development Director at Thames Enterprise Park said: “This new phase of work is a key phase in the process to unlock the size and scale of the opportunity at Thames Enterprise Park. We were pleased to welcome the Mayor to see first-hand the progress being made.  When complete, Thames Enterprise Park will result in more than £350 million per year delivered back into the local economy.  That’s £3.5 billion of economic impact over the first 10 years of operation here in Thurrock.”

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ALMCOR and Cerberus acquire a further £50 million of UK assets for European Industrial Outdoor Storage (EIOS) platform

JV partners signal growth ambitions after acquisitions in Leyland and Melton Mowbray


ALMCOR and joint venture partner Cerberus Capital Management have announced a substantial investment in two UK sites for its European Industrial Outdoor Storage (EIOS) platform.


The JV was launched in 2022 with €500m of allocated capital to deploy in target markets across the UK and mainland Europe. The platform aims to aggregate income producing assets with the potential to generate strong returns through active asset management and the creation of a specialist sector operating model.


EIOS assets are typically of low building site cover with a core focus on location and occupier demand from tenants mostly associated with logistics and light industrial sectors. Target sites normally benefit from easy access to major road / rail networks, marine ports or airports and often have close proximity to established industrial and logistics zones.
The recent acquisitions are:


• Leyland Business Park, Preston – a 48-acre multi-let industrial and open storage site with substantial development and asset management opportunities. The site benefits from excellent connectivity being adjacent to West Coast Mainline and both the M6 and the M65.


• Melton Commercial Park, Melton Mowbray – a 90-acre multi-let commercial estate with opportunities for redevelopment and energy generation . The strategically located site also benefits from two rail sidings serving a Network Rail test facility.


Peter McCluskey, Head of Active Value at ALMCOR, said: “These acquisitions provide an excellent snapshot into what we are doing in the EIOS platform. From the highly strategic location of Leyland Business Park to the critical rail facility in Melton, we’re quickly developing a diverse income producing portfolio with scope to drive value in a number of areas.
“Our Active Value platform builds on ALMCOR’s pedigree within the industrial and logistics sector, and we’re using this capability to unlock unrealised value potential through strategic acquisitions and active asset management. We’re actively looking for more EIOS investment opportunities across the UK and Europe.”


Examples of target EIOS assets include freight consolidation terminals, HGV parking, container yards, low site cover industrial / business parks, fleet storage & maintenance facilities, and bulk material storage.
Operating across Active Value and Strategic Land strategies, ALMCOR aims to identify opportunistic real estate investments driving exceptional capital returns through innovative asset management.


At Leyland Business Park, PK3 represented ALMCOR and Cerberus with BHT acting for the seller, Ainscough Properties Limited. Lambert Smith Hampton acted for ALMCOR at Melton Mowbray, with Savills representing the sellers Harworth Group.

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Completion reached on a landmark 115,600 sqft speculative warehouse development in North Bristol

Completion reached on a landmark 115,600 sqft speculative warehouse development in North Bristol

One of the largest single speculative warehouses to be built in Bristol has now reached practical completion at Horizon38, the landmark regeneration and employment scheme in Filton, north Bristol.

Unit G5, a 115,600 sq ft warehouse has been delivered by St Francis Group and ALMCOR with main contractor MCS Group Ltd. The property is immediately available for occupation.

The unit has been completed to a high specification, featuring 10 dock level doors, and 2 ground level doors, 50 KN/m2 floor loading, haunch height of 12m and a large secure yard, as well as a wide range of sustainable features including 6 EV charging points. The space also includes 5,600 sq ft of office space on the upper floor.

Situated within the Filton Enterprise Area, Horizon38 benefits from a ready labour supply within walking distance, the new Brabazon development, great local transport links including the MetroBus route, and accessibility to the city as well as the motorway networks.

Nigel Lax, Joint Founder of iSec Group (now Almcor), said: “Unit G5 represents the culmination of 7 years hard work on the part of Almcor and St Francis Group in regenerating the former 65 acre East Works Site and creating North Bristol’s premier business park. We are very proud of what our joint teams have achieved and look forward to successfully letting the final unit at Horizon 38”.

James Short, Associate at Avison Young, added: “Unit G5 will be a continuation of the high quality, sustainably built, speculative units developed at Horizon38, sitting alongside prestigious occupiers such as The Delivery Group and Elemis.”

“As a result of this accessibility, the size and high spec development of the new unit, the warehouse could easily act as a major industrial HQ for a local company, a strategic logistics hub servicing the region, or a facility to expand the neighbouring aerospace industries.”

Horizon38 combines industrial and distribution buildings totalling 580,000 sq ft with a further 25 acres of mixed employment space including new offices, trade warehouses, motor trade outlets with high profile occupiers including Village Urban Resorts, Volvo, GKN and CarShop.

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Welcoming the Government’s green light for Thames Freeport

Welcoming the Government’s green light for Thames Freeport

Thames Enterprise Park (TEP) has welcomed the Government’s green light for Thames Freeport and its confirmation of £25 million in initial funding to drive development and accelerate the delivery of the Freeport’s benefits and potential.

As a ‘Customs’ site within Thames Freeport, TEP will deliver the ‘additionality’ which is so central to the Freeport regeneration objective, complementing the already identified ‘Tax’ sites and offering its unique land platform into the Freeport ecosystem.

HM Government confirmed its commitment to Thames Freeport (20 March announcement – read here).

Rupert Wood, Head of Strategic Land at ALMCOR, speaking on behalf of Thames Enterprise Park, said: “Thames Freeport has significant potential to be transformational for Thurrock, South Essex and the wider Thames Estuary.  The Government green light and funding commitment is another important step forward.  At Thames Enterprise Park, we have a strategic land platform to bring into the overall Thames Freeport area and we expect to deliver substantial ‘additionality’ in terms of jobs, return on invested capital, and a full spectrum of broader commercial, social and environmental benefits.”

TEP is part of Thames Freeport alongside Port of Tilbury, Ford Dagenham, DP World London Gateway and the Port of London Authority (PLA).

Triggered by the Government announcement, Thames Freeport will now receive up to £25 million seed funding from government and potentially hundreds of millions in locally retained business rates to drive growth in the UK’s advanced manufacturing, biomanufacturing, logistics, and low carbon industries.

Levelling Up Minister Dehenna Davison said: “We’re delivering on our mission to grow the economy and level up right across the UK.  Thames Freeport is up and running and will bring high quality jobs, investment and trading opportunities for businesses in the region.”

Robin Mortimer, Maritime UK Chair said: “This latest wave of Freeport approvals is a major boost for UK maritime and the wider levelling-up agenda. Business, and the wider communities, will now be able to benefit from the wave of investment, development and jobs that Freeports are projected to generate.” 

Thames Freeport estimates that it will generate over 12,000 new jobs, and as a gateway to London, its hubs are well placed to provide global shipping routes for exporting UK produced goods and importing vital products for supply chains.

TEP anticipates making a significant difference to occupiers and industries that want to be part of the Freeport ecosystem and will benefit directly from locating at TEP where they can be part of the sustainable industries, clean fuels, advanced manufacturing and decarbonisation hub that TEP will provide.

TEP has planning permission (‘Resolution to Grant’) for  up to 3.7 million sq ft of commercial development within an integrated site masterplan for the regeneration of the former Coryton oil refinery site. 

With multi-modal connectivity (river, rail and road) together with deep-water jetties and important pipeline infrastructure already in place, TEP will provide outstanding commercial space for advanced logistics, advanced manufacturing and next-generation energy technology uses.  It will particularly benefit businesses looking for energy resilience, decarbonisation and ESG goals.

On its own, TEP will create up to 5,500 new jobs and deliver an estimated £350 million per year to the local economy.

It will transform 412 acres of brownfield land into a new commercial district with the first plots expected to be ready for development during 2023

TEP is one of ALMCOR’s major brownfield regeneration projects.  It is part of ALMCOR’s portfolio of large-scale, complex redevelopment sites where ALMCOR’s capability and expertise is making the difference in bringing strategic sites forward.

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Corringham Christmas lights sparkle – with a little help from Thames Enterprise Park

Corringham Christmas lights sparkle – with a little help from Thames Enterprise Park

As Christmas comes to Corringham, Thames Enterprise Park (TEP) is pleased to be playing a part in helping to create and celebrate the festive spirit.

Working with the Corringham, Fobbing & Homesteads Community Forum, TEP is delighted to be funding improvements and essential upgrades for the town centre Christmas lights for the second year running.

Roy Jones, Chair of Corringham, Fobbing & Homesteads Community Forum, said: “The Christmas lights make a really important contribution to Corringham town centre and bring a bit of sparkle for the festive season.  Without TEP’s support we would have struggled to finance the improvements needed so we’re tremendously grateful.  It’s excellent to have partnerships with local Thurrock businesses, like we do with TEP and a number of others, to help us achieve the things the Forum wouldn’t otherwise be able to achieve on its own.”

Graham Stark, Development Director at Thames Enterprise Park, said: “The Thames Enterprise Park site has been a major local employment location for over a hundred years and we’re delighted to continue to be an active member of the local community and ensure that TEP makes a positive difference where we can.  Helping to make sure that the Corringham Christmas lights shine bright in an energy efficient way is something we’re proud to support.  We wish everyone a peaceful, safe and happy Christmas.”

The Corringham Christmas lights are put on every year by the Community Forum.  TEP’s funding has allowed for new timers and important new parts to be purchased and installed, meaning the lights can operate safely, effectively, and in the most efficient way again this year.

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Thames Estuary Growth Board appoints Rupert Wood

 

Thames Estuary Growth Board (TEGB) has appointed ALMCOR Head of Strategic Land, Rupert Wood, to its Board.

TEGB is responsible for coordinating investment into the Thames Estuary region with a remit to turn its potential into good, green growth for the local area and the national economy.  The organisation works closely with businesses, investors, residents and communities to build partnerships which will transform the area.

Rupert joins the Board to reinforce its regeneration and development expertise.  In his ongoing role at ALMCOR, he currently oversees a significant portfolio of regeneration projects in key locations which include Thames Enterprise Park in Thurrock and Horizon 29 in Derbyshire.  He has previously managed major urban regeneration projects with Lendlease and St Modwen.

Rupert Wood said: “I’m delighted to be joining the Thames Estuary Growth Board.  I look forward to working with the Board and the Thames Estuary Team and to building on the momentum that has been made with ‘The Green Blue’ Action Plan as we set about unlocking the potential of the Thames Estuary.”

Rupert’s appointment is one of four as TEGB expands and strengthens its advisory team.

Thames Estuary Envoy and Growth Board Chair Kate Willard OBE praised the appointments: “I’m delighted to welcome our new Board Members.  The Thames Estuary Growth Board comprises some of the most brilliant business and elected member brains and the most dedicated people you will ever find.  Each of our new members is hugely talented in their field and will be an enormous asset to this already fabulous Growth Board.  I’m looking forward to working with all of them as we work together to play our crucial role in unlocking the potential of the Thames Estuary, attracting investment, and supporting infrastructure and job creation in the region.”

Rupert’s role with TEGB is outside of his Head of Strategic Land role at ALMCOR where he will continue to lead a team focused on realising value from major land assets and enabling the regeneration of complex sites.

-ends-

Note to Editors:

For more information on ALMCOR visit: https://almcor.com/

For more information on TEGB: https://thamesestuary.org.uk/

Media contact:

Ben Copithorne or Richard Pia at Camargue on bcopithorne@camargue.uk / rpia@camargue.uk / 020 7636 7366

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Horizon 29, Bolsover

 

Ground broken on latest multi-million development at Horizon 29

ALMCOR and its joint venture partner St Francis Group have announced breaking ground on a new 113,000 sq ft robot led HQ/warehouse for fast growing Chesterfield based Pharmacy Chain Peak Pharmacy at their much sought after Horizon 29 industrial development site at Bolsover, North Derbyshire.

Works on the £20M ultra-modern headquarters and facility commenced at the start of June and are accelerating rapidly. The new facility will use state of the art robotics and automated systems to support staff handling over 400,000 medicines and other prescribed items every month, equating to 20,000 a day, more than 40 every minute.

The new Pharmacy Service Centre will handle prescriptions and dispatch medicines for the firm’s 150 community pharmacies across England. Prescriptions will be assembled for individual patients, then either delivered to local pharmacies for collection the next day, or direct to patients’ homes.

The new hub is expected to take 9 months to build and due to open in April next year. It will house up to 100 staff, with the potential to grow into a 24-hour operation in future.

MCS Construction has been appointed as the main building contractor. The JV partners also acknowledge the support of the North East Derbyshire District Council, Bolsover District Council, Derbyshire County Council and the D2N2 LEP in bringing this development forward.

Rupert Wood, Head of Strategic Land at ALMCOR, said: “Following on from the sale of 80 acres to BentallGreenOak at the end of last year, it’s excellent to be on site with our latest building at Horizon 29. This will be an impressive new facility within an established logistics location in North East Derbyshire.”

Gareth Williams, Development Director at St Francis Group, said: “We are absolutely delighted to have formally marked the start of works on site and to be building this fantastic new facility for fast-growing customer Peak Pharmacy with the team on site already having made significant progress. This new facility serves as the first unit to be built at Horizon 29, welcoming our first occupier. Since we commenced the extensive remediation of the site interest in the scheme has been extensive and the recent sale by the JV of 80 acres of land to BentallGreenOak for the speculative development of 1.2 million sq ft of warehouse and logistics space speaks to that. We look forward to working with the team at Peak Pharmacy and delivering a first-class facility next year.”

Joe Cattee, Managing Director at Peak Pharmacy, said: “These are ambitious plans for our company, staff and customers – in the face of a rapidly changing pharmacy landscape. This new facility will be truly transformational for us. We’re investing now to future-proof our business, so that we can continue to provide great local customer service which means so much to us. We are very pleased to be working with St Francis and ALMCOR and the full project team and look forward to seeing the development rise out of the ground as it happens.”

 

Media contact:

Ben Copithorne or Richard Pia at Camargue on bcopithorne@camargue.uk / rpia@camargue.uk / 020 7636 7366

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Thames Enterprise Park wins planning permission for initial 3.7 million sq ft development

Regeneration of former Coryton oil refinery site will create 5,500 new jobs and expected to add £350 million per year to the local economy.

Thames Enterprise Park Limited, a joint venture between ALMCOR and Greenergy, has been given the green light from Thurrock Council for one of the most significant brownfield regeneration projects in the South East of England. 

Thames Enterprise Park will revive the former Coryton oil refinery site, initially delivering 3.7 million sq ft of advanced logistics, advanced manufacturing and next-generation energy technology uses.  It will create up to 5,500 new jobs.

The development is expected to add more than £350 million per year to the local economy ultimately growing to more than £3.5 billion.  It will transform 412 acres of brownfield land into a new commercial district with the first plots expected to be ready for development during 2023.

The development will have sustainability at its core and will comprise state-of-the-art construction to the highest standards of energy efficiency.  It will help occupiers to deliver on ESG requirements and feature next generation energy technologies that contribute to the decarbonisation agenda.  

Rupert Wood, Head of Strategic Land at ALMCOR, speaking on behalf of Thames Enterprise Park, said:

“This is an important milestone for the project.”

“Thames Enterprise Park is a once-in-a-generation regeneration project and we are very pleased to secure the support of Thurrock Council’s planning committee.  The project will create 5,500 jobs and will play a transformational role for Thurrock and for Thames Freeport, bringing this former employment site back into use with up to 3.7m sq. ft of modern, sustainable business space.  It will also create one of the most significant employment-led regeneration projects in the South-East of England.”

Thames Enterprise Park will play a pivotal part in the long-term success of Thames Freeport, the UK’s leading Freeport, with the site offering significant additionality for the Thames Freeport to achieve its full potential.

The plans will put Thames Enterprise Park at the heart of the decarbonisation agenda and help occupiers looking for solutions in the face of the energy transition and the climate change challenge.

Thames Enterprise Park is one of ALMCOR’s major brownfield regeneration projects.  It is part of ALMCOR’s portfolio of large-scale, complex redevelopment sites where ALMCOR’s capability and expertise is making the difference in bringing strategic sites forward.

 

Further information

You can find out more about Thames Enterprise Park on its website or social media channels (Twitter / LinkedIn).  For planning information, please visit the Thurrock Council website.

More on ALMCOR at https://almcor.com/ and Greenergy at https://www.greenergy.com/ 

Contact details for media

For information about Thames Enterprise Park, contact Richard Pia / Ben Copithorne on rpia@camargue.uk / bcopithorne@camargue.uk or 07850 796401 / 07968 748125 / 020 7636 7366

Notes to editors:

Thames Enterprise Park

  • The project is owned and being delivered through a JV between real estate regeneration specialist, ALMCOR and Greenergy.
  • ALMCOR is a portfolio company of MARCOL, the pan-European operating investor driving growth, value and innovation.
  • More information on Greenergy can be found at https://www.greenergy.com/ 
  • Thames Enterprise Park in Thurrock is one of the most significant employment-led regeneration project in the South East of England.
  • It is a once-in-a-generation opportunity to re-purpose the former Coryton Oil Refinery site on the banks of the River Thames in Thurrock into a modern, sustainable commercial district, providing up to 3.7million sq ft of ‘next generation’ advanced manufacturing, logistics and energy technology space.
  • The proposed redevelopment transforms 412 acres of brownfield land into a sustainable, strategic employment and infrastructure asset, creating up to 5,500 new jobs worth approximately £350m per year to the local economy.
  • As well as extensive commercial space, the proposed development also includes an Amenity Hub to promote research and innovation as well as education and training facilities, café, gym and new public access to the riverside.
  • Employment, training and apprenticeship opportunities will be promoted to Thurrock residents via a Local Employment & Skills Plan, using local labour sources and advertising for jobs locally.
  • Thames Enterprise Park will deliver a comprehensive multi-million pound package of transport investment, including upgrades to the local road network at The Manorway, the A13/Manorway interchange, Sorrells roundabout and