CC fends off City rivals on Guardian relocation

Clifford Chance has secured its first instruction from Guardian Newspapers (GNL) after competing against a raft of City firms to advise GNL on the relocation of its headquarters.

A team led by real estate partner Jonathan Solomon triumphed in a competitive tender run by GNL head of legal Siobhan Butterworth. It is understood that Lovells, which acts as regular property adviser to GNL, was among those to miss out.

The deal will see the publisher of The Guardian and The Observer move from its current locations in Clerkenwell to 150,000sq ft of space in the King’s Place development on York Way in London’s King’s Cross. The move is a landmark for the Parabola Land development, marking the first major pre-let deal with a big-name occupier. GNL will relocate its 1,400 London staff to the new premises in 2008.

The group, advised by surveyors Knight Frank, secured a bargain on its 20-year lease, paying £34.50 per sq ft, with a lengthy rent-free period.

Berwin Leighton Paisner, led by partner Laurie Heller, advised developer Parabola, while Herbert Smith acted for the funders, Eurohypo, on the move. It is understood that Herbert Smith won the role after Clifford Chance turned down the mandate.