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Microsoft acquires site in Leeds for hyperscale development

Image: Adobe Stock / Connect world

Microsoft has completed the purchase of a 48-acre site at Skelton Grange, Leeds, from Harworth Group for a total of £106.6 million, which will host a new hyperscale data centre development.

The deal involves two land parcels totalling £52.9 million for Plot 1 and approximately £53.2 million for Plot 2, with payments staggered and linked to the completion stages set for the second half of 2024 and the first half of 2026, respectively.

This acquisition marks a significant expansion for Microsoft in the UK. The Skelton Grange site, formerly a power station, was purchased by Harworth Group in 2014 and has since undergone extensive planning and development to prepare it for high-value industrial use.

Lynda Shillaw, Chief Executive of Harworth Group, said, “Since re-listing in 2015 Harworth has successfully completed a number of significant transactions that create value for our shareholders but this sale at Skelton Grange is the Group’s largest to date and is yet another exemplary case study that demonstrates the successful regeneration of brownfield land.”

The location of the site, coupled with Leeds’ growing stature as a data centre hub, will provide Microsoft with a base to support its expanding operations across Europe.

The funds from this land sale will enable Harworth to further invest in its core strategy of developing Grade A industrial and logistics properties.

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