The Zenith office complex in Chatswood in Sydney’s north has been bought by Centuria​ and Blackrock for $279 million.

It will be a seed asset for a new fund in the Centuria suite of unlisted funds.

The two 21-storey buildings at 821 Pacific Highway were sold by DEXUS​ Property Group and GPT Group’s wholesale office fund for $139.5 million each through agents at CBRE and Savills. The major tenant is Transport for NSW.

GPT’s wholesale fund manager Martin Ritchie said The Zenith was the third asset to be recently sold by the fund after the divesting of 545 Queen Street, Brisbane, and a 50 per cent stake in the Brisbane Transit Centre.

“The fund is focused on improving the overall quality of its portfolio through careful asset selection and intensive asset management. This also means that it is necessary to sell assets from time to time,” Mr Ritchie said.

“We plan to pay down debt in the short term and then look for opportunities to redeploy the capital in line with our investment criteria.”

DEXUS Property chief executive Darren Steinberg said the transaction “represents an opportunity for us to divest one of our non-strategic office properties at a premium to book value”.

“The sale is consistent with our strategy of focusing on our core markets, and results in more than $350 million of property divestments being completed or exchanged across the group so far in the 2016 financial year,” Mr Steinberg said.

Another sale due for completion is the office tower at 1 Shelley Street at Kings Street Wharf in Sydney, leased to Macquarie Bank. It is being sold by Brookfield as part of its strategic divestment to raise money for its $1 billion Wynyard Place development in George Street.

Charter Hall is tipped as the buyer of 1 Shelley Street, with a price estimate of about $500 million, also through CBRE and Savills.

Brookfield is also selling a half-stake in the nearby KPMG building, which may raise as much as $800 million for the two Darling Harbour sites. Recently, Investa Office Management bought 420 George Street for $442.5 million from Fortius Funds Management.

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