British Land sells property to Banco Santander for $169 million

British Land Co, the UK's second-largest real estate investment trust by market value, sold the London headquarters of Spanish banking giant Banco Santander SA's Abbey unit to the tenant for £115 million ($169 million). The building was developed by British Land in 2002 and is let to Abbey on a lease expiring in 2022.

Two-three Triton Square has space of 200,000-square feet (18,600 square meters), British Land said today in a statement. The sale price represented a yield, or rental income as a proportion of the property's value, of 7.2 per cent, the London-based company said. Jones Lang LaSalle and SJ Berwin acted for British Land.

British Land and other UK property companies are trying to raise capital after amassing debt to buy buildings during the five-year property boom that ended in mid-2007. The company raised about £910 million from a rights offer in March and the sale of half of its largest shopping mall in February.

''The sale is in line with our strategy to recycle capital towards opportunities which will offer greater risk-adjusted returns in the future,'' said Tim Roberts, the director of British Land in charge of office investments. ''As well as being a significant occupier at Regent's Place, Abbey will now become an important stakeholder in this 13 acre estate.''

Triton Square is part of British Land's 1 million square-foot Regent's Place development in central London. British Land is one of the UK's largest property investors with total assets, owned or under management, valued at £13.7 billion as of December last year.