Cromwell Property Group (Cromwell) and Korean real estate investment manager, IGIS Asset Management (IGIS) have agreed to purchase seven DHL logistics assets in Italy. They were bought for A$85.7 million (€52.5 million). The logistics assets will then form the seed portfolio for a new Cromwell European Logistics Fund. It will be focused on core+ logistics assets throughout Benelux, France, Germany and Italy, with a target total Gross Asset Value (GAV) of €400 to €500 million (A$650 to A$800 million).
Cromwell’s Chief Investment Officer, Rob Percy, says, “Logistics is a ‘high conviction’ sector that we believe will prove resilient in these difficult times and provide our capital partners with strong potential for outperformance over the medium term. We are excited by our new capital partnership with IGIS and the opportunity to launch a new European Logistics Fund. The demand for logistics assets is likely to continue to increase, supported by long term structural and demographic trends, especially in urban locations where supply is constrained.” Located in northern Italy, near Milan, Turin, Bologna and Verona, the seven properties are fully let to DHL on long-term leases with an overall portfolio WALT of 16 years. Two of the seven logistics centres are new.
FRANCE: LEASED PARIS OFFICE PURCHASED FOR €29m
Grosvenor Europe has acquired a 5,000 square metre building in Courbevoie, NW Paris, for approximately €29 million. The asset is fully leased to a major French communications company, providing a long-term income stream. The building is within a major urban renewal project comprising 200,000 square metres of offices and 80,000 square metres of housing. The fast-improving area is close to the Bécon-les-Bruyères train station, which will be serviced by the highly anticipated Metro Line 15 (Paris orbital metro). Steve Cowen, Executive Director Investment and Development, Grosvenor Europe, says, “Our strategy is to acquire core or value add office assets in Paris and key inner suburban sub-markets, where there is strong income or significant potential for future redevelopment. The intrinsic qualities of this building, in particular its flexible floorplate, make it a particularly interesting asset in light of how offices are likely to evolve in a post-COVID world.” Alban Hallé, Director France, Grosvenor Europe, added: “This high-quality building does not require immediate work, but as part of our strategy to achieve net zero operational carbon by 2030, we will make improvements to the building’s technical systems that enhance its sustainability credentials.” Grosvenor Europe was advised by Allez et Associés, Brun Associés and KPMG.
NETHERLANDS: SENIOR LIVING COMPLEX CHANGES HANDS FOR €37M
The Catella Dutch Residential Fund II has acquired the Gerlachus residence in Maastricht for around €37 million from the Ferox Real Estate Group. The former Sint Gerlachus retirement home is being completely renovated and will provide 130 senior living homes in a prime location close to the centre of Maastricht. The first residents will move in this autumn, with the project expected to be completed by early 2021. Catella Investment Management Benelux (CIMB), the fund’s Dutch investment advisor, was responsible for the deal. Ralph Willems, Senior Acquisition Manager CIMB, says, “As European populations live longer, it is imperative that we provide well-designed, modern apartments suitable for the needs of people who remain vital as they grow older. The Gerlachus residence offers a hybrid living approach, blending comfortable apartments with care facilities, if needed, as well as other services. The Catella Dutch Residential Fund II now has nearly €170 million of assets under management, strengthening Catella’s position as an important player in the senior living and affordable private rental sector in the Netherlands.” The Gerlachus residence is being comprehensively refurbished to meet the latest requirements of senior-friendly apartments.
UK: GRADE ‘A’ BIRMINGHAM OFFICE ACQUIRED
Union Investment has acquired an architectural gem in the heart of Birmingham. The office building at 55 Colmore Row, dates from 1875 and has a listed Victorian façade. The acquisition is being made on behalf of open-ended real estate fund UniInstitutional European Real Estate, which is targeted at institutional investors. The vendor is investment manager Nuveen Real Estate. The purchase price was not disclosed. Union Investment was advised by CMS and CBRE, while Nuveen was advised by A&O and Acre. Wolfgang Kessler, member of the management board at Union Investment Institutional Property GmbH, says, “The combination of building quality, history and location makes this property a rarity in the transactions market.” The six-storey building has twice been extensively refurbished. The property has a BREEAM Excellent rating. The property has a total area of around 14,600 square metres and is currently fully let. The main tenant in the building is the co-working space provider WeWork, which occupies around 5,100 square metres.
SPAIN: FOUR LOGISTIC WAREHOUSES BOUGHT
PATRIZIA AG has forward purchased the development of four logistic warehouses on behalf of its institutional investors for €50 million. The construction of the 65,800 square metre development at a logistics park in Valdemoro, Greater Madrid, is expected to be completed by 2022. Eduardo de Roda, PATRIZIA Country Manager for Iberia, says, “The existing growth trend towards e-commerce and particularly last-mile delivery has only accelerated under Covid-19. With the increased demand for premium logistics space, the timing for this deal and the quality of these assets could not have been better.” The value of PATRIZIA’s assets under management in Spain and Portugal currently stand at over EUR 1.35 billion.