Home - Armstrong Brooks Group

 

TO LET!

We have offices available at Sunderland To Let - please see "Property Available" above

Background

The whole group of companies is 100% owned me, Bob Cory.

Our main business activity is the buying, selling and letting of industrial and commercial buildings. We are NOT estate agents! We do not buy, sell or let for other people.

Recent Transactions

The majority of the properties listed in "Portfolio" above have been bought in the last few years

Salveson Tower, Aberdeen

Aberdeen

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I was the mystery buyer of this huge tower and a whole stack of other property for £20,000 in the Allsop auction of October 2018. And don't worry - we emerged with a modest profit.

Ex M & S Greenock

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And yet again I am the mystery buyer.

In this case it was a big chunk (50,000 sq ft) of a very nice mall in the March 2018 Acuitus auction for £200,000. Surprisingly, despite being the central part of the mall, we own the freehold interest and therefore have no requirement to pay the mall service charge. Why the mall did not buy it is still a mystery to me.

What are we doing with it? Well, as patrons of the arts we are painting a very nice mural across the front ... and subdividing it into smaller sections

Historical Transactions

I have carried out literally hundreds of transactions. Over an 11 year period in the 80's I acquired a major site every three weeks. Including the land which is now the UK headquarters of BMW at Thorne, Doncaster.

BMW Thorne

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I bought this 50 acre site in the early 80's from Christian Salveson as a field and spent several years arranging access directly off the motorway roundabout. In 1989 I persuaded BMW it would be perfect as their UK distribution centre and they bought the land from me and built the current facility. If you drive a BMW in the UK, it probably lived here for a while!

Florida

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In 1981 I bought twenty acres of land on the seafront in Panama City, Florida and started to build 350 condominiums called Horizon South. I designed them using balsa wood and then got a real architect to draw up the plans. These somewhat unusual houses are the result (there are four in a block).

My personal partner has just commented "perfect swastikas". Oh dear - I had never noticed that in 38 years but now I can't miss it!

The Google Story

In addition to property, I have in the past backed a lot of business start-ups. Some of these have worked well but most have not - this is an extremely high risk activity - don't go there!

Mind you, in 1999 I had the opportunity of buying 1% of Google for $50,000 (worth about eight billion dollars now). This came about because Ray Sidney wrote to tell me that my site (a humorous site that was very popular) was the largest source of traffic for them in the entire world and we got into conversation.

It was me who suggested that they track the time people spent on sites as a way of evaluating the relevance of that site to the query. Ray was horrified at this invasion of privacy but they did it anyway ...

At the time I could not see how they could make any money so declined the chance to invest. Hindsight is a wonderful thing

Quoted Companies - Venturia PLc

I have always been interested in the stockmarket and in 2003 I took control of a small AIM quoted company, Venturia Plc, which was a cash shell with a couple of million in the bank. To cut a long story short, everybody made money apart from me.

AIM is said to be relatvely unregulated and free of bureaucracy. Well, you could have fooled me. Just endless box ticking and form filling - what an incredible waste of time that was. Unless, you just love filling in forms, don't even think of getting involved with quoted companies. Any real entrepreneur will go nuts at the helm of a quoted company. Don't even think about doing it.

If you have time and money to waste, buy a Lamborghini* and get a used jet from me. It will be a lot cheaper and a million times more fun - trust me, I know about this stuff.

* Huracan is fine - no need to pay an extra £100,000 for an Aventador - if you really want doors that go up, Donna at the Body Centre in Norwich will do them for £6,000 - tell her I sent you.

Artificial Intelligence

I spent about 20 years working on this - the result is MOPEKS - not currently a commercial proposition

And if you want to know how the world will end, read Chapter 15, The Singularity, of my book MOPEKS - A Route to Intelligence?.

Bob Cory


Modified on 26/09/2021 at 11:50:01 by Bob Cory