December 1, 2009 / 3:09 AM / 10 years ago

UPDATE 1-Lend Lease wins London project bid, shares jump

* Lend Lease scores 1.5 bln pound contract

* Project is one of Europe’s largest urban renewals (Adds Lend Lease comment, details)

SYDNEY/MELBOURNE, Dec 1 (Reuters) - Australian developer Lend Lease Corp (LLC.AX) has won a 1.5 billion pounds ($2.47 billion) contract to redevelop a swathe of London’s Southbank, the firm said on Tuesday, sending its share prices sharply higher.

The project is one of Europe’s biggest urban regeneration schemes, comprising more than 300,000 square metres of new build, mixed-use development and infrastructure improvements, it added.

Shares of Lend Lease jumped after the announcement, rising more than 6 percent in early afternoon trade, outperforming the A-REIT index .AXPJ which was down about 1 percent.

The scheme has been split into six phases, starting with demolition in February, the firm said.

Lend Lease would masterplan and develop the site, putting money into the project over time but the investment would be small, said Lend Lease spokesowman Sally Cameron.

“Lend Lease is expected to invest some capital in it but there is no expectation that Lend Lease would fund 1.5 billion pounds,” said Cameron, adding that the income would mainly be generated from construction and development management fees.

Lend Lease also aims to expand its retirement-home business by buying out retirement village operator Lend Lease Primelife LLP.AX. On Tuesday, Lend Lease announced that it had raised its offer to 35 cents per security from 31 cents.

Reporting by Sonali Paul and Eriko Amaha; Editing by Mark Bendeich sonali.paul@thomsonreuters.com; +61 3 9286 1419; Reuters Messaging: sonali.paul.reuters.com@reuters.net If you have a query or comment on this story, send an email to news.feedback.asia@thomsonreuters.com $1=.6077 Pound

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