THE £20 billion Strathclyde Pension Fund has sold its freehold interest in one of Glasgow’s most famous retail buildings.

The fund, which has more than 230,000 members, offloaded House of Fraser’s Buchanan Street home to Mike Ashley’s Sports Direct for £95 million. It means the controversial retailer paid more for the building, which spans around 350,000 square feet over several floors, than he did for the 59-strong House of Fraser chain when Sports Direct acquired it out of administration in a pre-pack deal worth £90m in August.

Glasgow City Council is the administering authority for the fund, whose diverse membership includes former and current local authority, police, university and college staff.

The Strathclyde fund, which began investing in the building around a decade ago, going on to acquire it outright more recently, has property investments around the world. In Scotland, these include the Port Glasgow Retail Park as part of its Clydebuilt partnership with property firm Ediston.

A spokesman for the fund said: “Ultimately, we manage our investments with the aim of securing the best return for our members, who are saving for their futures.”

Sports Direct, which has been locked in disputes with landlords at other House of Fraser buildings, said 800 jobs at the property had been saved as a result of the deal. It pledged to invest to “further elevate and enhance this iconic department store”.

Richard Muir, deputy chief executive of Glasgow Chamber of Commerce, said: “An investment of this magnitude is a tremendous boost for Glasgow’s retail and commercial property sectors.”