$800m redevelopment, $722.5m sale proceed with HSF’s aid

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Herbert Smith Freehills (HSF) has acted for a long-time client on two major deals in two capital cities.

The firm has advised QIC on a major mixed-use redevelopment in Melbourne and the sale of half of the global property developer’s interest in an iconic Sydney building.

HSF advised QIC on the design and construction of a 300-room upscale hotel, office towers, and retail space for the $800m redevelopment of the 80 Collins St. site at the heart of the Melbourne central business district. The firm also advised QIC on all property elements of the deal, including land acquisition, access regimes, leasing arrangements, and heritage approval requirements.

The HSF team that advised QIC on the Melbourne project was led by partner Jane Hodder, who was supported by executive counsel Margaret Mertens and solicitors Victoria Brockhall and Josh Attard.

The firm also advised on the $722.5m sale of half of QIC’s interest in the iconic MLC Centre at 19 Martin Place in Sydney, which involved developing and implementing the sale strategy, including due diligence and drafting all deal documents. The on-market campaign for the sale produced three fully negotiated bids from a total of 31 bidders. Earlier this year, Dexus confirmed it agreed to buy a 25% stake in the MLC Centre.

The HSF team was led by partner Kerry Heilbronn, supported by executive counsel Leone Costigan, and solicitor Danica Corbett.

QIC is a long-time client of the firm. HSF advised a consortium – which included QIC – that won in 2015 the bid for the $2.9bn project for the NorthConnex Motorway in New South Wales. It helped on the sale of QIC’s 50% stake in UK shopping centre intu Merry Hill for $795m last year. HSF also helped the QIC-led Lonsdale consortium win the bid for the 50-year lease of the Port of Melbourne from the Victorian government. It also acted for QIC on the $500m redevelopment of the Grand Central Shopping Centre in Toowoomba, Queensland in 2016.

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