Nando’s and Starbucks are set to open new outlets as part of the expansion of Sprucefield Retail Park in Lisburn.
Both hospitality chains exchanged on agreements for leases with owners of the retail site in September 2023, according to recently filed accounts for NewRiver (Sprucefield) Limited.
The current tenants of Sprucefield Retail Park include B&Q, Sainsburys, Next Home and The Range.
It’s understood Nando’s and Starbucks will take on two of three new units set to be developed next to the Sainsburys fuel court at the retail park.
Negotiations with a third operator are believed to be at an advanced stage, with Canadian coffee chain Tim Horton thought to be in the frame.
Nandos currently have nine restaurants in Northern Ireland, while Starbucks has 27 outlets. The coffee giant is also opening another new Belfast shop at Donegall Square West.
The two drive-thru units and the restaurant outlet are due to open at Sprucefield in the summer of 2024.
The 9,800 sq ft of hospitality units are part of a broader £20 million plan to expand Sprucefield Retail Park to include new retail warehouse units and a hotel.
Sprucefield Retail Park was acquired by NewRiver for £40 million in 2020, but the investment trust later sold 90% a fund managed by the US-based Pacific Investment Management Company (Pimco).
NewRiver retains a 10% share in Sealand Sarl, the Luxembourg-based entity which owns NewRiver (Sprucefield) Ltd.
The owners of Sprucefield Retail Park have also agreed to sell part of its site to Lidl, subject to the German retailer securing planning approval for a new 27,000 sq ft supermarket at the location.
Lisburn and Castlereagh City Council’s planning committee is expected to consider a report on the Lidl proposal in the coming weeks.
An application for the next, and more significant expansion of Sprucefield Retail Park, was submitted to the council before Christmas.
Subject to approval, it would see 90,000 sq ft of retail space added to the site across five large units.
It would also involve another new restaurant built on the site and an 87-bedroom hotel developed along the M1 end of the park.
The latest accounts for NewRiver (Sprucefield) Ltd show it generated £4.02m in revenue during 2022, largely from rent (£3.67m).
But the gain from a revaluation of the asset, which was estimated to be worth £48m at the end of 2022, saw the company register a pre-tax profit of £4.3 million.
The accounts also state that NewRiver (Sprucefield) secured a £20m loan from AIB in September 2020.
Originally due in three years, the accounts state that a one year extension has been agreed.