Six jobs created as Group First takes freehold management in-house

Six jobs have been created after property company Group First turned down a £50m bidding war for its freehold portfolio in favour of managing it in-house.

GF Head OfficeThe company has announced that it has turned down three bids from major global pension funds to manage its extensive collection of freeholds, which yields annual ground rents from leaseholders.

Instead, Group First will take on six new members of staff at its head office in Padiham who will be responsible for managing the portfolio internally.

The newly appointed team will collect ground rents from leaseholders, administrate any changes to leasehold agreements and deal with day-to-day enquiries about leases.

Offers for the portfolio reached £48.5m before the company chose to bring the management of the freehold portfolio in-house.

Toby Whittaker, managing director of the Group First group of companies said: “Initially we looked at selling our freehold portfolio and we were lucky enough to receive some fantastic offers which came flooding in - everyone wanted it which made us realise it was too good to sell.

“By managing it ourselves we can create six new jobs and recruit within our own community to boost the local economy and keep it in Lancashire, where we’re proud to be.” Group First’s commercial property portfolio includes business centres, self-storage facilities and airport car parks while its residential division owns the freeholds for numerous apartment complexes and housing developments across the UK, including Liverpool’s award-winning Mann Island.