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Icon Industrial sells Manchester Airport land to The Hut Group

Icon Industrial has confirmed the sale of an 11.6-acre site at Manchester Airport to one of the world’s leading online beauty and wellbeing retailers, The Hut Group (THG), as part of the first phase of its prime warehouse and logistics scheme.
 
The developer is set to transform the land into ICON, THG’s new £150 million logistics and global content creation studio, after Manchester City Council approved plans for the development.
 
ICON will deliver 104,000 sq. ft. of office space over four floors and additional content creation facilities totalling 168,000 sq. ft. Work will start on the new development in June 2019 and is expected to be completed by July 2020. Winvic Construction has been appointed as contractor.
 
Icon Industrial, a strategic joint venture by leading commercial property developer, Stoford Developments and private global investment firm, TPG Real Estate, acquired 45 acres of land from Airport City Manchester in July 2017. The JV has recently secured a detailed planning approval for two additional highly specified industrial/warehouse units of 102,500 sq ft and 138,375 sq ft at the site, which is known as Icon Manchester Airport.
 
Icon Industrial’s deal with THG is part of the ecommerce giant’s plans for a new business campus at Manchester Airport, which includes a 280,000 sq ft office building at Airport City North – THQ. This is phase one of a four-phase development.
 
The combined ICON and THQ developments are expected to support up to 10,000 jobs.
 
Dan Gallagher, Joint Managing Director of Stoford Developments, said: “We’re pleased to have completed a deal with The Hut Group, which both parties have worked hard to complete and this secures the third occupier for the scheme. ICON is an exciting development that will offer unrivalled airport connectivity and will enable THG to reach a worldwide market. Icon Manchester Airport is a rapidly growing global logistics area of Airport City and continues to attract significant demand from potential occupiers keen to relocate here. We look forward to delivering what is a prime warehouse and logistics scheme at the very heart of the Northern Powerhouse, making it one of the highest quality logistics locations in the country.”
 
Sir Richard Leese, Leader of Manchester City Council, said: “Airport City represents a key opportunity for major economic growth with the potential to support thousands of jobs for Manchester people. So it’s with some excitement that we see the rate of progress by The Hut Group and it’s encouraging to see this development move forward with such momentum.”
 
Located adjacent to the World Freight Terminal Icon Manchester Airport offers excellent road, air and rail connections, with immediate access to junction 6 of the M56 motorway and Greater Manchester. It also benefits from the £290 million A6 Manchester Airport Relief Road, significantly reducing journey times to Manchester Airport.
 
TPG Real Estate and Stoford Developments are building Icon Industrial into a significant logistics platform by acquiring and developing similarly attractive UK sites, as well as refurbishing existing buildings in prime logistics locations. The JV recently commenced work on its second acquisition, Icon Harlow, which brings its total GDV to over £250 million. 
 
TPG Real Estate has significant experience investing in logistics while Stoford has completed more than 14 million sq ft of industrial development in the UK.