L&G refinances real estate loan

The firm has refinanced a loan backed by four real estate assets. The investments are billed as diversifiers within the firm’s loan portfolio.

Legal & General Investment Management has provided refinancing to the tune of £24.5 million ($31.2 million; €27.8 million) to property developer Citygrove.

The loan refinances a trio of office buildings and a leisure centre owned by Citygrove. It is arranged over a seven-year term and replaces financing initially provided by Close Brothers Property Finance.

Ashley Goldblatt, head of real estate lending at L&G, told PDI the firm had lent money at the short end of the market beforehand. That’s despite insurance companies normally being associated with long-term lending to match their pension liabilities.

The firm lent to Deutsche Finance International and Yoo Capital facilitating the buyout of Olympia London in April. That loan was arranged over five years, Goldblatt said.

Goldblatt added his firm is pursuing deals of varying length for their diversification benefits. “If we can somehow get a pastiche of loans together we have a much more varied book,” he said. Having greater flexibility also lends itself to identifying more opportunities, Goldblatt added.

The firm has lent £2 billion across 21 deals within its real estate lending business. Goldblatt says the portfolio of loans is roughly balanced between short-, mid- and long-term investments.