May 9, 2018 / 12:30 PM / a year ago

Stockmann to sell Helsinki bookstore property for $129 mln

HELSINKI, May 9 (Reuters) - Department store chain Stockmann has agreed to sell a well-known Helsinki building to AEW Europe City Retail Fund for 109 million euros ($129 million), the Finnish company said on Wednesday.

Stockmann had put the “Book House” for sale in January in a bid to cash in on the Finnish capital’s booming commercial property market and to bolster its finances.

Stockmann said in a statement that it will use the money to pay back debt. Shares in the company, which have fallen about 40 percent in 12 months, were up 4 percent by 1216 GMT.

“Book House” was designed by architect Alvar Aalto and built in the heart of Helsinki in 1969. Stockmann used to sell books there itself before selling that business to Sweden’s Bonnier in 2015. ($1 = 0.8420 euros) (Reporting by Jussi Rosendahl, editing by Terje Solsvik)

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