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Tampere Deck Arena ‘proceeding normally’ amid ownership change

Officials behind the Tampere Deck Arena in Finland have maintained the project remains on course after construction company SRV significantly reduced its stake in the venture.

SRV has said it will sell three quarters of its stake in Tampere Deck Arena, set to be Finland’s largest events arena once complete, to other investor partners in the project, namely OP, Ilmarinen and Lähi-Tapiola.

SRV’s decision is part of a recovery programme first announced in October which has the short-term goal of ensuring that its operating profit and cash flow for 2020 are positive and its operative operating profit for 2021 returns to the level of 2017.

SRV holds one third of the companies forming the Tampere Central Deck and Arena project. The co-investors will purchase three quarters of the shares and partnership interests owned by SRV in the Tampere Central Deck and Arena project for a purchase price of approximately €19.3m (£16.3m/$21.1m).

After the disposal, SRV will hold a stake of approximately 8.33% in the Tampere Central Deck and Arena project. SRV said its announcement will not affect the development of the project or its position as the contractor.

Commenting on the announcement, Arena CEO Marko Hurme said: “A change in ownership is important for investors, but it has no effect on the day-to-day affairs of the arena, such as schedules, progress, or events that have already been agreed. The arena is being built according to plan and the project is proceeding normally.”

SRV chief executive, Saku Sipola, added: “SRV has announced a major comprehensive solution to strengthen the company. As part of our plan, we are reducing our ownership in the Tampere Deck and Arena project. Tampere is increasingly important to SRV and this is a significant project for us despite our shrinking ownership.”

The foundation stone for Tampere Deck Arena was laid in September. The 13,500-seat arena, set for completion by the end of 2021, will be the focal point of Tampere Deck, a new district that is being developed over railway tracks in Tampere city centre.

Designed by architect Daniel Libeskind, the Tampere Deck will bring together the eastern and western city districts on both sides of the railway tracks. Joining the old city districts, the Deck aims to provide a completely new kind of living environment.

It will comprise residential services, business and trade premises, a hotel and the arena. The railway line will serve to bring event guests into central Tampere from across Finland with the entire district set for completion in 2025.

Image: Arena Tampere Deck