Commercial real estate stock exchange IPSX went live on Friday with its first IPO – Birmingham’s Mailbox building.
The single-asset Mailbox REIT raised £25.9m in the issue, representing 30.5% of the issued share capital on admission. M7, the owner of the Mailbox, has retained a 69.5% stake in the REIT.
IPSX, the world’s first exchange for single commercial property assets, was created to broaden investor access to the industry by publicly listing either single assets or portfolios of closely related assets.
The exchange has two segments: IPSX Prime and IPSX Wholesale, the former targeting retail investors, with the latter exclusively set up for institutional investment.
M7 was one of IPSX’s early backers and, as of October 2020, holds approximately 15% of the exchange’s share capital.
Though initially intending to float on IPSX Prime late last year, Mailbox REIT announced modified plans to float on IPSX Wholesale in March after several delays to its IPO.
The delays came amid M7’s discussions with IWG, which had expressed an interest in both occupying space in the building and investing in the REIT, and with Oxford Properties, which was gearing up for a takeover of M7.
After Oxford Properties’ acquisition of M7 and the switch to IPSX Wholesale, Mailbox REIT successfully completed its IPO with capital raised from a number of institutional and family office investors, including IWG.
The building comprises 698,000 sq ft of primary office space, anchored by the BBC, with additional retail and leisure space.
A second IPO is now in the works, with M7 planning to bring Bridgewater Place House in Leeds – the tallest building in Yorkshire – to the market in the coming months.
Stephen Barter, chairman of Mailbox REIT, said: “In becoming the first company to be admitted to and have its shares traded on IPSX, Mailbox REIT has carved out a unique place in the history of real estate capital markets investment.”
Richard Croft, executive chairman of M7, added: “The Mailbox offers long-dated income streams, underpinned by very low-risk high-profile tenants, as well as significant income and value enhancement potential.
“The investment is further supported by the strengthening fundamentals of the Birmingham market, which is attracting growing occupier demand with a number of major blue-chip companies moving into the city, as seen most recently with Goldman Sachs International’s announcement of its intention to open a technology centre there.
“With an improving outlook, an expected economic recovery and by advancing our strategic plans for Mailbox REIT, we are well positioned to deliver for investors as a publicly traded company on IPSX.”