Hot property: GM Real Estate receives takeover approach

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GM Real Estate was set up in 2010 by veteran dealmakers Tony Gibbon — known in the industry as “the animal” for his robust approach — and Tony McCurley, the former London head of agency giant CBRE.

The duo have advised on a succession of the capital’s biggest property deals, acting for the Safra Brazilian banking dynasty on its £726 million purchase of the Gherkin skyscraper and for Korean pension fund NPS on the sale of the HSBC headquarters at Canary Wharf — at £1.1 billion the UK’s most expensive office building.

It recently sold No 1 Poultry, another City landmark opposite the Bank of England designed by Sir James Stirling.


Now industry sources say GM Real Estate has attracted the attention of Colliers International, which has been on a buying spree in the UK under UK and Ireland boss Tony Horrell.

Colliers has been owned by US parent FirstService Corporation since 2012, although FirstService announced this month that Colliers will be spun off into a standalone business.

News of the approach came as it emerged the majority shareholder of agent Cushman & Wakefield, Italy’s Agnelli family, is putting the company up for sale with a potential $2 billion (£1.29 billion) price tag.

One insider said GM was an obvious target for Colliers “as they have no real presence in the City”.

A purchase would net a multi-million payday for Gibbon and McCurley although the Standard understands Colliers’ initial approach has not been big enough to sway GM’s founders.

A spokesman for Colliers said: “Colliers is in talks with a number of industry professionals and businesses at any given time.” GM Real Estate declined to comment.

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February 25, 2015 |
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