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New Buy Proves The Richardson Family Isn't Abandoning Logistics After All

How the new 400K SF Spectrum logistics park, Birmingham, could look

It looked like the Midlands-based Richardson family had decided on a timely exit from the red-hot logistics property market.

That turns out to be wrong. Far from giving up on logistics property investment, the Richardson clan are continuing their partnership with the St Francis Group to back an eight-unit, 400K SF scheme at Kings Norton, Birmingham.

This is the third collaboration between the family and St Francis and follows the successful development of nearly 600K SF of speculative warehouse space across the region. The prospects in the much-fancied urban logistics sector seem to have tempted the family to continue the partnership.

The 29-acre scheme, to be known as Spectrum Logistics Park, will be built on the site of the former Pilkington Automotive and GKN Aerospace manufacturing plants.

Full planning consent has been granted for the site at Eckersall Road. Units will range from 25K SF to 70K SF in a play that is sure to appeal to the urban logistics sector.

“As we move into the build phase, we are continuing to see huge demand for units in this mid industrial box sector and are already marketing the scheme for pre-lets,” St Francis director Gareth Williams said. 

In December 2020, the Richardson family sold a second portfolio of warehouse assets for £108M.

The exit came barely two months after the dynasty sold an 11-shed portfolio for £68M, and just two years after the family shrewdly moved into the shed sector.

In September 2020 the Richardsons completed the first phase of 'Project Bertha': an off-market disposal to Tristan Capital Partners’ EPISO 5 fund that saw 668K SF of logistics floorspace change hands at a time when warehouse yields have scarcely been tighter.

Demolition work on the Spectrum site is scheduled to begin in May once the existing occupiers have moved out and the first units will be ready for occupation from September 2022. 

Savills and JLL are joint agents at Spectrum.