REPORTS were circulating in Edinburgh last night that one of the capital’s landmark buildings – home to its most famous store – has been sold for more than £50 million.

The National understands that the Jenners building at the east end of Princes Street has been sold for £53m to the Danish billionaire Anders Povlsen, owner of the Bestseller retail chain.

Edinburgh residents need not worry about the Jenners name disappearing, however, as the store has a long lease on its occupancy of the building.

Arguably Scotland’s most famous department store, Jenners, part of the House of Fraser group, has stood at the corner of Princes Street and South St David Street since 1838.

The original shop – Scotland’s first department store – burned down in 1892 and was replaced by the current building three years later. It was built to a design by the architect William Hamilton Beattie who also designed the Balmoral Hotel, formerly the North British, and the Carlton Hotel on North Bridge.

Originally Kennington and Jenner after the two drapers who opened the original store – they are said to have won the money to start it at Musselburgh races one day – the store became simply Jenners and was owned by the Douglas Miller family until the sale to the House of Fraser in 2005.

Directly opposite the Scott Monument, with its address being 47-52 Princes Street, Jenners has long been an iconic landmark in Edinburgh, often known as the Grand Dame of Princes Street.

Reports of the sale were sketchy, but it is known that the building was put up for sale earlier this year by owners Glen Properties with an asking price thought to be £52m.

They are believed to have paid £32m for the building in 2005 when House of Fraser took over Jenners. It is understood that German investors TRIUVA had been interested in securing the property in a private deal last year but that fell through. Though there was no confirmation yesterday of the sale on the part of Povlsen, the reputable website CoStar stated that the sale had been completed.

Real estate company Harper Dennis Hobbs confirmed that it had “advised the buyer as Edinburgh’s famous Jenners department store owned by Glen Properties changed hands.”

If it is Povlsen who has bought the building, it will be the latest in a long line of investments in Scotland which have made the Dane the second-largest private landowner here after Buccleuch Estates. Known for the secrecy in which he conducts business transactions, Povlsen inherited his business from his parents when he was 28 and built it into a global concern. In the last decade or so he has bought Glenfeshie estate, the Eriboll estate in Sutherland and nine others giving him more than 200,000 acres of Scotland. He is known to be passionate about rewilding land and was once quoted as saying: ‘My family and I are very fond of Scotland. It is a lovely place with wonderful nature and nice people. We had the possibility to buy some land – and we are very happy about that.”

An Edinburgh developer who asked not to be named said: “This is clearly a straightforward investment in Jenners as a brand and to gain the rental income which is said to be in excess of £2m per year.

“It’s a listed building and so iconic that no-one would be allowed to change it very much, so while there might be plans in the very long term I would think it will be business as usual for Jenners.

“It’s a good bit of business by Glen Properties and a solid investment by Anders Povlsen.”