Steptoes acts on tallest sale in Wales

Newly-merged transatlantic firm Steptoe & Johnson Rakisons has acted on the £17m acquisition of Wales' tallest office building for the Raven Property Group.
Raven bought 25-storey Capital Tower in Cardiff from the Dartmoor Limited Partnership. Dartmoor is a joint venture set up by GE Capital and Portfolio Holdings to develop and sell Capital Towers and other buildings. GE Capital and Portfolio Holdings were advised by Neffyd Jones, a partner in Eversheds' Cardiff office.
Raven was originally the underbidder for the building. It won a five-way battle for the 13,000-square-metre landmark building after talks between Dartmoor and the original preferred bidder fell through.
A London-based team of Steptoe & Johnson Rakisons lawyers, led by property partner Martin Gordon-Russell and corporate partner Jonathan Polin, advised Raven. Raven was incorporated in 1997, and Rakisons, the London contingent of the merged firm, has been the company's main adviser since.
“Raven is one of the largest property companies in the UK, but it has grown rapidly since it was first established. As the company has expanded into such a major client, our commercial property group has grown with it,” said Gordon-Russell.
According to Gordon-Russell, Raven chairman Anton Bilton has also been a private client of the firm.
Eversheds has been advising Dartmoor on the deal since the partnership first purchased Capital Tower in 1997. It was appointed by GE Capital, an existing client of the firm.
A rolling team of assistants and trainees led by Jones has been advising Dartmoor on complex redevelopment issues surrounding Capital Tower for the entire four years.
“The redevelopment issues have been complex because Capital Tower had tenants in situ while Dartmoor was redeveloping it,” said Jones. “We've advised Dartmoor from the purchase right through to the finished refurbishment of the site. All along, we've helped to make sure the in situ tenants were not inconvenienced by the refurbishment.”
Since acting for the joint venture, added Jones, Eversheds has also won work for Portfolio Holdings.