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Property crash costs publisher £9m on office deal

A property developer snapped up the former home of three Midlands newspapers for £9m less than its value two years earlier.

The Birmingham Development Company last month bought the former home of the Birmingham Post and Mail and Sunday Mercury for £5.2m.

But the Post reports that the same nine-storey building, in the Colmore Circus area of the city, was valued at £14.3m just two years earlier.

The figures emerged from six-month accounts revealed by parent company Trinity Mirror on Thursday.

BDC is responsible for Birmingham’s iconic Mailbox building, home to the BBC, and is also completing the ‘Cube’ project in the same location.

Details of BDC’s exact plans for the titles’ former home are still yet to emerge but the Post says it expects it to be a mixed-use complex. The Mailbox also houses restaurants, bars, boutiques and a register office.

The three newspapers moved out of the city centre last November to Fort Dunlop, a former disused tyre factory off the M6 five miles from Birmingham, but retains a satellite office in the city centre.

The site was bought by BDC after going on the market again when a deal with a previous buyer called Abstract Land collapsed.

The same company had already bought the other half of the former Post and Mail building and turned into the Colmore Plaza tower.

It had arranged a deal in 2007 to buy the offices for £14.3m but, even though it fell through, Abstract Land still had to pay the £1.4m deposit to Trinity Mirror.


Shuttleboy (03/08/2009 13:12:16)
Please be less careless with the use of “iconic”. It is just possible that the Rotunda is iconic in birmingham but definitely NOT the Mailbox.

Unhappysnapper (03/08/2009 14:31:06)
So how many more staff will Trinity Mirror have to sack to make up the difference?!