Currently reading: McLaren puts Woking headquarters up for sale
Company plans £200m sell-and-leaseback for famous facility as part of fundraising effort
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2 mins read
10 September 2020

McLaren has put its Woking headquarters up for sale in an attempt to strengthen its balance sheet against the ongoing impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.

The property, which is one of the world’s most iconic motorsport HQs, has been in McLaren's hands since it was built in 2004, but now the British firm has instructed property agent Colliers to begin marketing a sale-and-leaseback for £200 million, according to Sky News.

The Woking HQ comprises three buildings: the original Stirling Prize-shortlisted McLaren Technology Centre, the newer McLaren Production Centre, which is used primarily for manufacturing McLaren Automotive road cars, and the McLaren Thought Leadership Centre. All three buildings are part of the proposed sale-and-leaseback.

Should a buyer be found, McLaren will lose ownership of the prestigious property. However, as per the terms of the offer, it would remain at the Woking site, leasing the property back from the buyer over a period of years.

A McLaren spokesperson told Autocar that the company is yet to confirm a final price for the property but is expecting offers "in excess of £200m". McLaren expects the HQ to be sold by the end of this financial year.

"The potential sale and leaseback of our global headquarters and the appointment of banks to advise us on a debt restructuring and equity raise are part of the comprehensive refinancing strategy that we announced earlier this year,” a McLaren spokesperson told Autocar.

“Building on the shorter-term measures that we put in place over the summer, these initiatives will deliver a stronger balance sheet and ensure that McLaren Group has a sustainable platform for long-term growth and investment.”

The sale is McLaren’s latest bid to improve its cash flows in response to the coronavirus pandemic, which has severely affected its revenues. In May, it cut 1200 jobs – more than a quarter of its workforce – across its Applied, Automotive and Racing divisions. It also sought to borrow up to £275m against its classic car collection and Woking HQ, securing a £150m loan from the National Bank of Bahrain.

“This is undoubtedly a challenging time for our company and particularly our people, but we plan to emerge as an efficient, sustainable business with a clear course for returning to growth,” said McLaren Group executive chairman Paul Walsh.

“McLaren Applied has also already refocused to strategically prioritise proven, high-growth revenue streams.”

McLaren cited the cancellation of motorsport events, the suspension of manufacturing, the shortage of car sales globally and reduced demand for technology solutions, all driven by the Covid-19 crisis, as the cause of its troubles.

READ MORE

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Adrian Barlow 14 September 2020

Rubbish

In my humble opinion, these cars are rubbish compared to an S-Class Mercedes, a Bentley, or a top-spec 7 Series.
If you use them much, their value drops like a stone.
And almost as badly if you don't use them, except for the F1, of course.
Good only to look at, boast about, and show off to your neighbours.
And you know that beautiful young woman is saying to her pal, "Look at that plonker!"
Adrian Barlow 14 September 2020

Rubbish

In my humble opinion, these cars are rubbish compared to an S-Class Mercedes, a Bentley, or a top-spec 7 Series.
If you use them much, their value drops like a stone.
And almost as badly if you don't use them, except for the F1, of course.
Good only to look at, boast about, and show off to your neighbours.
And you know that beautiful young woman is saying to her pal, "Look at that plonker!"
The Apprentice 12 September 2020

Really saddens me to even

Really saddens me to even think that yet another world leading British engineering company could be lost but it looks grim and its not their own fault.
I hope they put a right to buy back clause in their property sale if better times emerge.

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