Entrance to Grey's Quarter, intu  Eldon Square
Entrance to Grey's Quarter, intu Eldon Square
Jamie Hardesty

Eldon Square and Metro Centre pass into new hands following £3.4bn merger

Popular North East shopping destinations Eldon Square and Metro Centre are set to pass into new hands, as owner Intu Properties agreed a £3.4bn merger deal with retail giant Hammerson earlier today.

Creating a £21bn pan-European portfolio of retail and leisure assets, Hammerson shareholders will own 55% of the enlarged group while Intu shareholders owning the other 45%.

The new group will officially go by the Hammerson name but the Intu brand will continue to be used within its current shopping centre portfolio.

Personnel wise, current Hammerson Chairman David Tyler will keep his role with Intu Deputy Chairman John Whittaker supporting.

In addition, Intu Chairman John Strachan will become an senior independent director and Hammerson Chief Executive Officer David Atkins will be CEO of the enlarged group. Intu’s current Chief Financial Officer Timon Drakesmith will stay on in the same capacity.

Stephen Patterson, Director of Communications at NE1 Ltd, believes the merge can only be good news for the region and its retail sector.

He explained: “It is fantastic news about the merger of Hammersons and intu and specifically about what this will mean for retail and investment here in Newcastle.

“Both companies have an outstanding pedigree for investment and development in the city with intu’s Eldon Square and Hammerson’s landmark development of Monument Mall.

“We’re excited to see their plans for the future. Both are at the top of their game and at NE1 we look forward to working with them and supporting them with future development plans.”

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