Newmark sells out of South Yarra’s Jam Factory

Newmark Capital has quietly sold the balance of South Yarra’s Jam Factory to the co-owners, Qualitas and Gurner, which will revise a proposed redevelopment.

A Jam Factory redevelopment with four apartment towers was approved in 2022.

The two thirds stake in the 1.93 hectare asset at 500 Chapel Street, with extensive frontage to Garden and the train line between South Yarra and Hawksburn, is speculated to be costing $125 million.

The outgoing proposal would have contained 20,000 square metres of offices.

The pair outlaid about another $60m, according to sources, to snare the balance in September, 2021.

The year later, a proposal with a c$1.5 billion end value was approved with four apartment towers, two rising 25 storeys, two 10 level buildings with a total 20,000 square metres of office space and a wellness centre.

Existing retail – spreading c18,500 sqm – and a 4600 sqm cinema would have been renovated.

Two hotels and some 1200 basement car parks were also planned.

With the Qualitas and Gurner buy-out, the Village cinema will instead undergo a more comprehensive refurbishment. The entrance will be shifted to the ground floor.

The office area will also drop, to about 15,000 sqm. The residential component is also expected to be upscaled with penthouses mooted to be priced up to $30m.

Construction should start by the beginning of next year (story continues below).

The Jam Factory site, bound by Chapel and Garden streets and the train line.

More Jam Factory dicing

Established in 1858 as the Victoria Brewery, the prominent red brick building was taken over by jam maker Red Cross in 1880, then Henry Jones IXL, which operated there until 1970.

The office now on the ex-Jam Factory car park at 11 Wilson Street.

It was refurbished as a shopping centre 45 years ago – at a then reported cost of c$20m.

The last major renovation was in 2012, by Challenger, which also proposed major redevelopments, one with an end value of c$700m, four years earlier.

Newmark, led by ex-Hawthorn footballer Chris Langford, paid Challenger $165m in 2015.

A car park component on Wilson St was flipped three years later for $12.8m.

That buyer, Vicland, led by Bill McNee, constructed a 10 level office which sold in 2021 for $73.5m to German fund manager Real IS.

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Marc Pallisco

A former property analyst and print journalist, Marc is the publisher of