Wokingham Borough Council has chosen to invest in our community, protect a vital amenity and secure long term income by growing its property investment portfolio with the purchase of the Waitrose building in Twyford.
“With ever increasing pressure on our budget it’s critical that Wokingham Borough Council looks for opportunities to become more commercially minded and find ways to make the money we do have work better for residents,” said Cllr Stuart Munro, executive member for business and economic development.
The council set up the commercial property investment team in early 2018 following executive approval of a £100m investment fund in September 2017. The aims of the fund are specifically to secure long term investment income for the council which can then be used to fund essential services for local residents for many years to come.
“Our growing investment portfolio is a key part of this approach and is proving to be a real success seeing excellent returns for our residents. In the last year we invested around £47m from which we are now generating an annual income of more than £2.6m. That’s a fantastic return of over 5.5% on our investment, five times more than the 1% return we would get if we simply put this money in a bank.”
Cllr Munro continued: “A key focus is to invest within the borough so an opportunity like this, right in Twyford town centre, fits perfectly with our strategy. Waitrose are a strong tenant and we are glad to have secured this site for our residents, community and long term revenue.”
“As a council we remain very careful in seeking out the right opportunities to grow our investment fund. We work closely with a strong professional team to ensure we balance risk and reward in keeping with our approved strategy. Making sure that our purchases are spread across a wide range of sectors and tenants so we don’t have all our eggs in one basket.
More details on the Property Investment Fund can be found on the Datasets and open data page on the Councils website at www.wokingham.gov.uk