The former Carlton & United Breweries’ headquarters in Abbotsford has been listed for sale as the head of the development firm who owns it grapples with a $100 million tax debt.
Developer Hengyi bought the 2-6 Southampton Cres site for $16.5 million in 2015.
Federal Court documents revealed late last month show Hengyi chairwoman Min Wang had more than $103 million in assets frozen by the Australian Taxation Office over an amended assessment of income tax and administrative penalties.
Hengyi are currently building a 72-storey apartment tower on Victoria St, Melbourne called Swanston Central.
Their past projects in Melbourne include Light House, a 69-level apartment tower on Elizabeth St, and a pair of William St towers dubbed The William.
Hengyi are selling the five-storey Abbotsford property once leased by CUB, along with a pair of warehouses at 36 Bond St and 27 Duke St that adjoin the site, as a combined 3000sq m package, with early interest in excess of $20 million.
Commercial real estate agencies CBRE and Fitzroys are handling the sale.
CBRE’S Mark Wizel said the buyer would look to capitalise on the “incredible emergence of the former industrial pocket of Abbotsford”.
Local developer Salta Property Group has already made significant investments in the area, which, along with Victoria Gardens Shopping Centre nearby, is expected to attract a range of interested parties.
Fitzroys’ Paul Burns said the area was in high demand from businesses looking to lease space, particularly as residential development of older offices and warehouses left less space for rent.
A neighbouring carpark was sold for $12 million in April, with two recent sales on nearby Grosvenor St to China-based investors worth $37 million and $17 million.
The former CUB headquarters are across the road from the firm’s main brewery site — now operated by Asahi.
The Southampton Cres property was originally built for Kodak and has a distinctive curving facade.