The poorly performing CHQ shopping centre in Dublin’s International Financial Services Centre is to be offered for sale at a fraction of its original cost.
Duncan Lyster of the Lisney agency is seeking “in the region of €10 million” for the former 19th century bonded warehouse which cost €45 million to remodel and redevelop in 2007.
It is an open secret that the elaborately glazed building has incurred losses since opening for business just as the property market was about to take a nosedive. In spite of its trading record, several prominent investors have already shown interest in the forthcoming sale in the belief that they can possibly pick up a bargain and turn CHQ into a successful venue in a relatively short period.
Anyone pitching to buy the former Stack A will undoubtedly want to know why such a prominent and attractive centre underperformed.
It was originally promoted as Dublin’s most exclusive shopping centre but when it failed to attract the top luxury retailers to cater initially for thousands of workers in the financial district, the Dublin Docklands Development Authority was forced to go back to the drawing board. A number of top retail experts were engaged to charter a future course for the centre but despite extensive promotion and marketing campaigns, all efforts failed to put CHQ on a profitable and successful footing.
Last summer the Government announced its intention to wind up the DDDA in the aftermath of the scandal involving the €412 million purchase of the Irish Glass Bottle site. The 25 acres were subsequently valued at just over €45 million.