* Rents in prime London residential properties was down 1.3% year over year in the first half, although the market points to rental growth in the second quarter, according to the Savills World Cities Prime Residential Rental Index. The report noted a strong market activity that helped narrow the gap between supply and demand in the quarter despite Brexit uncertainty.
Leading world cities grew 0.9% in the first half to take the average year on year growth to 1.3%. Barcelona is among seven cities including Los Angeles, Berlin, Tokyo, Hong Kong, Beijing and Shanghai to have experienced an annual rental growth above 3%, as per the index.
* Etalon Group PLC acquired the remaining 49% stake in Russian residential real estate company Leader Invest JSC from Sistema PJSFC for 14.6 billion rubles. Sistema previously sold 51% of the share capital of Leader Invest to Etalon in February.
UK and Ireland
* Property purchases by foreigners in expensive London areas such as Belgravia, Mayfair, Knightsbridge and Chelsea fell to 44% in the first half of 2019 from 58% of total purchases in the second half of 2018, The Times reported, citing Hamptons International. According to the report, "recent global economic slowdown combined with heightened political uncertainty” are holding back overseas buyers.
* According to the Financial Times, hundreds of landlords are exposed to WeWork Cos. Inc. through rental commitments worth $47.2 billion. Citing real estate data firm CoStar, the publication noted that more than 50 landlords in the U.K. lease space to the co-working giant and have limited recourse if it fails to pay rent.
* According to the FT, the Holy Cross college in central Dublin and its adjoining lands are being sold in a €95 million property deal to sports organization Gaelic Athletic Association. Gaelic partnered with U.S.-based Hines to build up to 1,200 apartments, sports facilities, a hotel and commercial units on the site, the report added.
* In a bid to reinvigorate the struggling British high streets, the U.K.'s Labour party will allow local authorities to seize properties that have been vacant for at least 12 months, the FT reported. Approximately 11.8% of stores are vacant across the country, the publication said, citing the Local Data Co.
* Lincolnshire Co-op's €76.7 million development of the Cornhill Quarter in Lincoln, U.K., has attracted new retailers, with Neon Sheep letting 1,711 square feet, a Doughnotts branch letting 1,600 square feet, Seasalt letting 2,500 square feet and énergie Fitness letting 7,304 square feet, among other tenants, Europe Real Estate reported. The overall regeneration zone is expected to deliver more than 150,000 square feet of mixed-use commercial floor space over a series of development phases.
* Global real estate investment firm Hines is planning a 665-unit residential project with a range of community amenities in the city quarter of Sudkreuz in Berlin, Europe Real Estate reported. The scheme will comprise a total area of 21,430 square meters with 11,550 square meters of office and commercial space, according to the report.
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