Siglion has recruited experienced commercial property specialist Paul Stewart as asset manager to direct and manage a substantial investment portfolio of property assets including retail, industrial units and business centres transferred from Sunderland City Council to Siglion. It has also appointed Knight Frank as managing agents.
Siglion, an innovative joint venture company between Carillion and Sunderland City Council, for which Igloo Regeneration is providing development, asset and fund management advice, is carrying out an ambitious £100m-plus programme to transform Sunderland. An important part of the redevelopment programme is to drive economic growth in the city, and the business and retail spaces within the investment portfolio will be key to this.
Paul Stewart joins Siglion as asset manager from NHS Property Services, where he was responsible for providing strategic asset management and property management advice in relation to the NHS primary care estate across the North East and Cumbria. He was formerly a development surveyor with GVA commercial property consultants, based in Newcastle.
Paul Stewart and Siglion’s chief executive John Seager are developing a long-term strategy for the management of the asset portfolio to increase its value, develop job opportunities and economic return to Sunderland and the wider region.
Paul said: “It’s great to be involved at the start of a major regional project, which is hugely important in shaping the future of Sunderland. The work I’ll be heading up will be reviewing the asset portfolio and working with our tenants to ensure that operating a business from one of our premises is as simple and efficient as we can possibly make it.
“I’m excited to be part of the team at Siglion and keen to meet as many of our tenants and key stakeholders across the city as possible.”
As part of Knight Frank’s initial three-year contract as managing agents, three jobs have already been created and nine posts have been safeguarded. The Knight Frank team is aiming to increase the employment potential across the property portfolio and maximise its value to Sunderland.
Knight Frank partner Jason Wall said: “On a day-to-day basis, this involves making sure tenants are happy in the premises, that the properties are in good repair and businesses can function properly from the sites, without worrying about issues such as repairs.
“We are also responsible for landlord-tenant issues, arranging contracts, collecting rent and generally assisting with the strategy of how the portfolio is run and managed.”
Siglion chief executive John Seager said: “I’m delighted to welcome Paul to Siglion, and know that with his drive and experience he’ll be able to hit the floor running. He’s a great addition to the team.
“I’m very familiar with working with Knight Frank. Its management team is the best in the region for dealing with a property portfolio of this size and importance.
“They understand their tenants’ businesses through active management and close working relationships, and will be able to tailor the offer to attract new businesses from around the region.”
Sunderland City Council leader Coun Paul Watson added: “We are delighted that Knight Frank has been selected to manage this key part of the city’s regeneration programme.
“The transfer of nine city council staff to Siglion and the creation of three new posts to manage the property portfolio is good news for employment. We’re confident more jobs will be created through strong management of the portfolio, which will help in the redevelopment of Sunderland as the kind of city where even more people want to live, work and importantly, establish their businesses.”