Bids wanted for £300m Olympia London venue

A major conference centre is on the market with a multi-million pound price tag.

Capital & Counties (Capco) is set up to sell Olympia London for more than £300m.

According to the Sunday Times, Capco, who are currently building homes on the old historic Earls Court site, have drafted in agents from CBRE and investment bankers from Rothschild to auction the property.

A spokesperson from Capco said: “Capco regularly reviews its strategic options for its assets. Following the successful transition of shows from Earls Court and a major refurbishment programme, Capco confirms that it is conducting a strategic review in relation to Olympia London which may or may not lead to a disposal of the asset. Any further announcements will be made as appropriate.”

Chris Skeith, CEO of the AEO, believes news of Olympia potentially being for sale could indicate a very positive future for the venue: “It is reassuring that Capco, as a property company, is seeking to market the venue as a going concern, not for redevelopment, which could reveal opportunities for a more ‘event-centric’ business to move into, or extend their involvement in the sector.

Skeith continued: “Indeed, there have been significant improvements to the venue in recent years which should make the prospect of buying an historic exhibition and events venue in London particularly appealing.”

Olympia generated underlying earnings of £9m in the six months to June and was valued at £265m, according to Capco’s latest results. As well as the exhibition centre, an adjacent site with planning permission for a hotel and 90 flats could be included in any sale.

It is understood that Olympia customers have been informed of the situation and reassured about the venue’s future.

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Conference News resides at the heart of the conference industry examining the issues affecting organisers, venues, destinations and suppliers. Published monthly, Conference News features the latest news, interviews and industry analysis from market influencers.

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