The high-tech smart offices acquired by Allianz Real Estate

Here is the European commercial real estate deals round-up for the week of Tuesday 17 September 2019. They include a smart office sold in Berlin.

High-tech smart office in Berlin

Allianz Real Estate has acquired a smart office in Berlin from developer EDGE Technologies.

It has been bought in a joint venture between several Allianz group companies and also Universal-Investment. They acted on behalf of a property fund for German pension fund Bayerische Versorgungskammer (BVK).

The acquisition of EDGE East Side Berlin is the first equity deal in which Allianz Real Estate has acquired and will also manage an asset on behalf of a joint venture. This includes a third-party institutional investor wishing to invest alongside Allianz.

The acquisition of the smart office in Berlin supports Allianz Real Estate’s focus on prime office assets in tier 1 cities. It also extends established relationships with both EDGE and BVK.

Latest development scheme with smart technology

This is the latest development scheme led by Allianz Real Estate to deploy ‘smart’ technology. It places tenant well-being as well as sustainability at its core. It follows the recently announced Corso Italia 23 deal in Milan and also the acquisition in July of EDGE HafenCity Hamburg.

The 35-storey landmark smart office building in Berlin offers the highest environmental rating throughout its 65,000 sqm of lettable space in the Mediaspree sub-market. It has been designed by Bjarke Ingels and was also developed by EDGE. The specialists in developing sustainable, modern office assets also make extensive use of ‘smart’ building technologies. On its completion in 2023, the building will be one of the most high-tech in Berlin.

The Mediaspree sub-market has become a sought-after, fast-growth location. That is especially true of the tech sector looking for assets with modern features and larger floorplates.

François Trausch, CEO, Allianz Real Estate, says, “EDGE East Side Berlin further underscores our successful commitment to working with prime partners, investors and stakeholders in prime locations globally. BVK is a highly sophisticated investor with a similar, long-term mindset to Allianz Real Estate and we are delighted to announce that they are investing with us alongside Allianz on this key strategic asset.”

Annette Kroeger, CEO of Allianz Real Estate North & Central Europe, says, “Responsible investing goes to the very heart of our investment strategy and we will continue to actively target additional deals that focus on sustainability as we look to grow our portfolio and support our underlying investors.”

Allianz Real Estate has been advised by CBRE.


Offices and logistic acquisitions

Portes Sud, in Toulouse

One of the largest property investment managers in the world, PGIM Real Estate, has bought offices and a logistics platform in France.

The acquisitions for investors in its core plus and also value-add pan-European discretionary funds are for the Atria office building in Paris; a Class A logistics platform development project in the south of Paris. It is also for Portes Sud, an office campus in Toulouse.

PGIM Real Estate is the real estate investment business of PGIM, the US$1.3 trillion global investment management business of Prudential Financial, Inc.

Jocelyn de Verdelon, head of France, Spain & Portugal at PGIM Real Estate, says, “These recent acquisitions demonstrate the agility of PGIM Real Estate’s platform in France as well as our ability to execute on transactions across sectors and strategies in which we have conviction.”

Atria is an approximately 5,000-square-meter office building in Paris’ 10th arrondissement. This area has become the natural eastern extension of the Parisian business district. It is also very popular with startups and companies in the technology and communications sectors.

Built in the 19th century, Atria has hosted the Cristalleries Baccarat factory. It was also home to the Baccarat Museum and the Pinacothèque de Paris.

Strong architectural identity

Restructured and transformed into an office building in 2012, Atria holds a strong architectural identity from this heritage. It is characterized by large open spaces and also high technical specifications. This incudes an excellent capacity ratio.

The property is currently 100% leased to coffee and tea company Jacobs Douwe Egberts, a leading

In addition, PGIM Real Estate acquired from Grand Paris Aménagement a Class A logistics development project. This is in the ZAC du Noyer aux Perdrix at Servon (Seine-etMarne), 25 kilometers south of Paris.

This transaction, comprising a 76,000-square meter site and also a development agreement with IDEC Group, will create a 31,000- square-meter logistics platform.

Upon its delivery in September 2020, the property will aim for BREEAM “Good” environmental certification.

PGIM Real Estate also acquired the “Portes Sud” office campus. The campus comprises three buildings totaling approximately 20,000 square meters, near the Toulouse ring road, in the business district of Bordelongue.

Delivered in 2010 by developers Altarea Cogedim, it benefits from technical specifications that exceed local market standards. It includes a sub-ceiling height of 2.70 meters as well as large, rational and easily divisible floorplates.

GIM Real Estate will reposition the partially vacant Portes Sud to better meet user demand. It will also implement a subsequent leasing and management strategy to bring new tenants to the property.


€100 million of Dutch logistics bought

The warehouse in Venlo

Real estate investment fund manager Clarion Gramercy has acquired €100 million of nine Dutch logistics assets.

Clarion Gramercy, which specialises in logistics as well as industrial assets, has acquired a portfolio of three logistics facilities totalling 78,523 sqm. They were acquired from a private vendor for an undisclosed purchase price. It consists of two warehouses in Tilburg, leased to a Dutch 3PL and a garden furniture manufacturer; and also one in Rotterdam, leased to a grocery retailer.

Gramercy has also acquired a 44,000 sqm portfolio of five warehouse properties, via sale and leaseback. It consists of three operating properties in Katwijk and also two developments in Katwijk and neighbouring Haps. This will be delivered turnkey in December 2019 and July 2020. Nabuurs B.V., a leading Dutch 3PL, has agreed new fixed 10-year leases on all the properties.

Katwijk and Haps are in North Brabant, one of the Netherlands’ most densely populated regions. There are more than 17.5 million inhabitants within a 100 km radius of the properties

In a third transaction, Gramercy has also acquired, via sale and leaseback, a 20,132 sqm warehouse from FM Tyres, a global premium band tyre distributor. Venlo is in the South East of the Netherlands near the German border. There are approximately 19 million inhabitants within a 100 km radius.

Continued growth in Dutch logistics

Rory Buck, Senior Director of Clarion Gramercy, says, “We continue to grow our logistics exposure in the Netherlands, with the strong performance of the domestic economy underpinning the e-commerce sector’s upward trajectory.

“Whilst we are seeing growing competition from investors seeking to benefit from the strong rental growth that is forecast in certain pockets of Western Europe, we are well placed, as these acquisitions demonstrate, to source and acquire a diverse range of logistics properties, maintaining both our enviable rate of deploying available proceeds and our significant outperformance.

“These latest acquisitions fit with our stated strategy of acquiring functional logistics assets in prime locations that are let to established pan-European businesses and where we believe there is an opportunity to drive returns through various asset management strategies.”

In April this year, Clarion Partners, LLC, a leading US real estate investment management business with over $51 billion of assets under management, announced the acquisition of a majority stake in Gramercy Europe. Gramercy was advised by JLL and also Industrial Real Estate Partners.

Since 2018, Gramercy has invested a total of €250 million in the Netherlands and €590 million across Europe


Joint Venture to invest €500m in Med hotels

The BLESS hotel, Ibiza

A new joint venture between Azora and Palladium Hotel Group is set to invest €500 million in luxury Mediterranean hotels.

The joint venture where Azora holds a 75% and Palladium Hotel Group the remaining 25%, has already acquired three hotels for €115 million as well as an additional investment in capex of €110 million, reaching a total initial investment of €225 million.

The transaction includes the BLESS Hotel Ibiza with 151 keys and a category of 5* Deluxe and also Fiesta Hotel Tanit with 440 keys and 3* category, both located in Ibiza as well as the Fiesta Sicilia Resort with a total of 529 keys and a 4* category located in Cefalú, Sicily.

BLESS Hotel Ibiza previously known as Fiesta Hotel Cala Nova, has been newly refurbished from a 3* category with 305 keys to a 5* Deluxe category with 151 keys.

BLESS Hotel Ibiza, which is part of the prestigious association Leading Hotels of the World, opened its doors last June.

Refurbishment strategy

The joint venture’s strategy includes the refurbishment of the Fiesta Hotel Tanit and also Fiesta Sicilia Resort, as well as favouring 5* and 5* Deluxe brands of the Palladium Hotel Group.

Fiesta Hotel Tanit will be subject to a full repositioning under the Deluxe brand TRS and also an all-inclusive adults-only offer, with an entertainment program of the brand which is already known in other destinations of the Caribbean and Mexico.

Lastly, the hotel in Cefalú, Sicily, will be refurbished under the Grand Palladium Hotels & Resorts 5* brand under an all-inclusive offer, once the current season finishes.

The agreement reached between Azora and also Palladium Hotel Group contemplates an investment commitment of up to €500 million to favour the Deluxe brands of the hotel group in other touristic destinations of Europe and the Mediterranean.

Concha Osácar, founding partner of Azora, says, “The creation of this alliance falls within out firm decision of investing in the resort hotel segment, with a strategy to transform assets with unique locations with the help of a leader in cutting edge innovations within the hotel segment such as Palladium Hotel Group.

“For Palladium Hotel Group this joint Venture confirms its bet on a sustainable growth of its 5* brand exposure worldwide as well as boosting the company as hotel operator under management contracts.

Alantra has been the financial advisor for Palladium Hotel Group in this transaction.


Core logistics warehouse bought and let

The warehouse in Artenay-Poupry

CBRE Global Investors has acquired a 31,000 sqm warehouse in Artenay-Poupry, France.

Located in the north of Orléans, the entire warehouse has been pre-let to a subsidiary of Groupe Mutual Logistics who have signed a six-year firm lease.

CBRE Global Investors has worked with GSE to develop the grade A logistics warehouse. The project, initiated by Primelog, will be delivered in early 2020 and also aims to obtain a BREEAM level Good certification.

Gautier Beurnier, Head of Transactions France, CBRE Global Investors, says, “This pre-let grade A warehouse benefits from a great location within the growing sub-market of North Orléans. This deal is also our first opportunity to work in partnership with Primelog, which is an informal relationship we are pleased to establish.”

Hélène Fort of Primelog, adds, “We have been faithful to our ethos throughout the project, which is to develop high quality logistics buildings that achieve environmental certification while supporting the development of growing companies”.

CBRE Global Investors was advised by Etude Monassier (Mourade Guechi), Linklaters (Françoise Maigrot). It was also advised by Immasset (Benoit Eckstein) and also Environnance (Bruno Fruchard).

GML was advised by Anne-Hélène Garnier and also Pierre-Thomas Durand (Etude Oudot).


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