German billionaire in talks to buy Hamburg’s stalled Elbtower

The tower was designed by Christoph Felger of David Chipperfield Architects (rendering courtesy of Signa Real Estate)
German logistics magnate Klaus-Michael Kühne is considering a purchase of Signa Real Estate’s half-finished Elbtower, German business newspaper Handelsblatt reports.

A source told the paper that discussions on a possible deal are advanced, but that no decision has been made.

Kühne is the majority owner of transport group Kühne und Nagel as well as a stakeholder in German airline Lufthansa and shipping firm Hapag Lloyd.

Work on the 254m Hamburg tower stalled in November after its Austrian developer missed interim payments to contractor Lupp.

According to the paper, the project has been hit by high construction costs, rising interest rates and “home-made problems”.

The group’s real estate management subsidiary in Germany declared insolvency last Friday, and construction had halted at six of its sites in the country by the middle of last month.

The project is expected to cost €950m and, if completed, will be the third highest building in Germany after the Commerzbank Tower and the Messeturm (Trade Fair Tower) in Frankfurt.

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