DLA Piper and BLP act on final White Tower sale

Berwin Leighton Paisner (BLP) and DLA Piper landed roles on the sale of the last property in the White Tower portfolio, Aviva Tower, to an unnamed purchaser for £288m.

The sale marks the end of one of the most high-profile commercial mortgage-backed security workouts.

BLP advised Ernst & Young as vendor, and managed the bidding through to completion. Real estate partners John Kelsey and Samant Narula led on the deal, assisted by senior associate Kellie Hatton and associate Sally Tomkinson.

DLA Piper advised the unnamed purchaser.

In a statement Kelsey said: “Dealing with the White Tower portfolio has been a fascinating journey. The team had to navigate some difficult strategic decisions on the timing of sales and whether to release properties on a single or portfolio basis.

“A huge effort was made to present a thoroughly comprehensive due diligence package to minimise fire sale discounting on the price. It was a great team effort to achieve that outcome among the agents, surveyors, loan servicers, receivers and the lawyers.”

White Tower’s loan, secured against nine properties, defaulted in June 2009. Other buildings in the portfolio included New Court on London’s Carey Street and Leadenhall Court.