Leading property developer and investor Barberry has announced a strong performance in the first half of the year with significant growth in both turnover and profitability.
The Worcestershire-based company has seen its main contractor, Vinci Construction, progress well on delivering Phase one of Bishop Gate, Coventry – comprising a 725 unit student accommodation development, with PC for the start of the 2018/19 academic year. Barberry has also secured two prime industrial sites in Birmingham, with speculative development planned during the course of the year subject to securing planning permission.
It has also continued to purchase residential blocks throughout the country, with recent purchases made in locations including Cheltenham & Leamington Spa. Significant refurbishment work is underway at Chelsea Court, Cheltenham and Pointer Court, Lancaster with apartments in both schemes due to be offered for sale and rental in the second half of 2017. The company remains active in strategic land promotion, notable examples being West Cheltenham, Redlands Airfield, Swindon & Hurcott, Kidderminster. Further strategic residential and employment sites have been secured in the period.
The company has also disposed of a retail scheme in Bradley Stoke, Bristol – with occupiers including Aldi and Pizza Hut – to The Portman Estate for £8.65 million. The sale has released equity which will be reinvested into further acquisitions.
Henry Bellfield, director of Barberry Group, said: “It really has been a very productive start to 2017 and the figures reflect the hard work of everyone in the Barberry team.
“The economy and the property market remain somewhat unpredictable, hindered somewhat by all the recent political uncertainty, so to have performed so strongly in the first six months of the year provides us with a very strong platform on which to build. We are confident that we will continue in a similar vein, with shrewd investments and developments as and when opportunities arise across the asset classes.”
He added: “We are in a very strong position to develop and trade. However if the market conditions aren’t conducive to a disposal or a disposal doesn’t suit the business we can retain the asset within our portfolio. We owned the Bradley Stoke investment for 10 years and an industrial estate in Bedfordshire for 15 years – we only trade when the conditions suit us.”
The first half of the year has also seen Barberry invest in the complete refurbishment of its headquarters, which is located on a prominent site off the A491 near Belbroughton.
Bishop Gate is the biggest development project Barberry is currently delivering. The firm signed an agreement with Coventry University to procure the development, which over Phase one and two will provide 1,116 units across five towers with two of the towers reaching 17 storeys. It is being built on the former Royal Mail sorting office site. The £60 million phase one, which includes 725 units, is expected to be completed for the start of the 2018/19 academic year.
Barberry purchased the former Tucker Fastenings site in north Birmingham, where it plans to build a 46,000 sq ft high quality industrial/warehouse unit once planning consent is granted. The developer is also currently refurbishing a block of 11 apartments it has purchased in the Montpellier area of Cheltenham to improve rental and resale values along with the comprehensive refurbishment of Pointer Court, Lancaster comprising 24 two bed apartments.