There were deals worth £574.12m for large Scottish commercial property assets purchased by international investors during the 13 month period leading up to the end of January this year.
Private overseas clients were involved in a number of notable deals, including the near £100m sale of Edinburgh’s Standard Life House and the £105.5m purchase of Port Hamilton – the home of Scottish Widows.
There were also substantial investments from private individuals into commercial property in Glasgow and Aberdeen, with the £14.1m acquisition of the Ca’d’oro building by Glasgow Central station and the £23.5m deal for the Granite City’s KCA building.
Alasdair Steele, head of Scotland commercial at Knight Frank, said: “We’re seeing wholesale changes in the types of buyer interested in the Scottish market.
Historically, UK funds have been the most frequent purchasers of Scottish commercial property, but we’re increasingly seeing private overseas money coming into Scotland – almost every deal sees interest from a new entrant.
“We anticipate the appetite among private international buyers will remain strong and they will continue to be a core part of the market for the remainder of 2016 and beyond.”
International buyers also snapped up half of Scotland’s 16 rural estates sold in the last financial year, with the total value of these transactions reaching £57.5m.
Among the new owners of Scottish estates in 20152016 were from Qatar, the USA, Chile and various European countries. One of the most noteworthy deals of the year was the sale of Kinnaird Estate, Perthshire, with a guide price of £10m.
Ran Morgan, head of Scotland residential at Knight Frank, said: “Edinburgh is a particularly attractive option for overseas investors looking at the UK. Many now find London property overheated, while its capital city status and global standing as a cultural and tourist destination further add to its appeal.
“High quality education is a specific draw for buyers from Asia and Russia, and increased air connectivity from new routes to America and Middle Eastern hubs have aided its attraction to these markets.”