Carlyle seals $1 bln White Tower UK property deal

* Represents first major British property buy since 2008

* Financing provided by syndicate of banks led by SocGen

LONDON, July 8 (BestGrowthStock) – The Carlyle Group [CYL.UL] has
agreed to buy six London offices linked to the failed White
Tower commercial mortgage-backed securitisation 2006-3 (CMBS)
for 671 million pounds ($1 billion), in its first major British
property buy since 2008.

The private equity house bought the portfolio on behalf of
investors in its third European property fund, Carlyle Europe
Real Estate Partners III, which was launched in June 2008 after
raising 2.2 billion euros ($2.8 billion) of equity.

“Whilst each property benefits from an existing secure
income profile, there are considerable longer-term opportunities
across the portfolio for active asset management and
redevelopment,” Robert Hodges, managing director of Carlyle
European Real Estate said.

“We are especially pleased to secure long-term, flexible
financing from a syndicate of strong relationship banks led by
Societe Generale, for such a large portfolio, especially given
current debt market conditions,” he said.

The six offices, let to a range of tenants including
JPMorgan, UBS and IBM, represent the bulk of the assets
supporting the 1.15 billion pounds White Tower 2006-3 CMBS,
which defaulted in July 2009 after a sharp correction in UK
commercial property prices.

CB Richard Ellis Loan Servicing, special servicers of the
bonds, put 8 of the 9 properties backing the CMBS up for sale in
March in an effort to repay as many noteholders as possible.

At the time, CBRELS said it had received advice that the net
proceeds of the sale were “likely to allow the full repayment of
Class A Notes and at least a significant proportion of Class B
Notes”.

The steep market downturn, triggered by a collapse in global
credit markets, slashed the value of the property portfolio
backing the CMBS to 929 million pounds at end-June 2009, almost
half their worth when the bonds were first structured and sold.
($1=.6583 Pound)
($1=.7939 Euro)
(Reporting by Sinead Cruise; editing by Simon Jessop)
(See www.reutersrealestate.com for the global service for real
estate professionals from Reuters)

Carlyle seals $1 bln White Tower UK property deal