Belfast Telegraph

Google's £102m deal to buy Dublin building 'imminent'

By Ronald Quinlan

Tech giant Google is close to signing a deal with developers Paddy McKillen and Belfast-born Johnny Ronan to acquire the Treasury Building in Dublin for a figure in excess of €115m (£102m), it has emerged.

The completion of the transaction was described as being "imminent" by a source close to the process last night. Negotiations in relation to the sale of the property on Grand Canal Street have been under way since February last year.

While agents CBRE had originally been instructed to handle the sale of a 33.33% stake in the building on behalf of Percy Nominees, it is understood Google came forward and expressed its interest in buying the 11,619sq metre (125,066sq ft) property in its entirety.

Percy Nominees bought its one-third stake in the property when it was redeveloped in 1989 by Ambiorix, a company controlled by Mr Ronan; Paddy McKillen's son Paddy Jr, and Mr McKillen's co-director Liam Cunningham.

Google's imminent purchase of the building comes just two months after the web giant completed its acquisition of the entire Bolands Quay scheme.

The sale of the development at a total cost of approximately €300m followed months of negotiations with Nama-appointed receiver Savills Ireland.

Google's interest in buying the Bolands Quay project was revealed by Belfast Telegraph sister newspaper the Irish Independent last November.

Upon completion, the development will comprise 36,851sq metre (396,660sq ft) of office, residential, retail and cultural space, and will be capable of accommodating up to 2,500 workers. Google's expected purchase of the Treasury Building represents another major coup for Mr Ronan's Ronan Group Real Estate (RGRE).

News of the deal comes just days after it was reported that Mr Ronan has entered into exclusive talks with San Francisco-headquartered tech giant Salesforce in relation to leasing all 46,184sq metre (500,000sq ft) of the office space at RGRE's Spencer Place scheme in Dublin's Docklands. While the 965 employees at Salesforce's EMEA base are currently divided between offices at the Atrium Building and One Central Park in the Sandyford Business District (SBD) in south Dublin, the company's proposed move to the Docklands will give it significant scope to expand its Irish workforce.

The Spencer Place offices will have the capacity for between 4,000 and 5,000 people.

Belfast Telegraph

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