Catch up with the latest headlines in the European commercial property sector in our news summary for 2 February. This week we feature the acquisition of a leading investor and developer M7 Real Estate, the greenest developer in CEE, a big investment in Romania and a new European property fund.

One of the portfolio

Oxford Properties acquires M7 Real Estate 

By: Oxford Properties 
Summary: Leading global investor, asset manager and developer of commercial real estate,  Oxford Properties Group, has exchanged on the acquisition of M7 Real Estate, a pan-European investment and asset manager. With a team of approximately 225 employees in 14 countries across Europe, M7 manages a portfolio of around 620 assets comprising 45.2 million sq ft. The acquisition allows Oxford to accelerate its deployment of capital into multi-let industrial and also urban logistics across Europe. Oxford had previously stated its ambition to deploy £3 billion of capital into the European logistics sector, and the acquisition gives it immediate scale to do so. 
Key quote: James Boadle, Senior Vice President, Europe at Oxford Properties, says, “The industrial and logistics sector continues to be supported by significant tailwinds, with e-commerce penetration, evolving supply chains and the impact of technology on every aspect of society creating a supply demand imbalance in all our markets. Through this one transaction we gain access to a large-scale platform in M7, led by a world-class management team, that spans 14 countries and instantly scales up our European business in this important sector.”   
Read the full story: 

A CTP building

The greenest developer in the CEE?

By: CTP 
Summary: European commercial real estate developer CTP claims to have the most environmentally-friendly industrial real estate portfolio in Central and also Eastern Europe. In total, 292 CTP buildings at around 100 different locations in six countries have a BREEAM In-Use status at the Very Good level or higher. 
Key quote: Martin Vaidiš, who is responsible for sustainable construction design at CTP, says, “Certification of the entire portfolio was a huge challenge. No other developer in the Czech Republic or Central and Eastern Europe has had the quality of so many buildings checked in terms of building design, structure, use and sustainability. We are not aiming only for our new buildings to meet high environmental standards; our goal is to meet these with our entire portfolio.” 
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MAS Real Estate’s Atrium Mall

Big investment in CRE company

By: PropertyWheel 
Summary: The Oppenheimer family has spent half-a-billion rand on a stake in JSE-listed MAS Real Estate to gain exposure to Romania’s commercial real estate market. Romania is one of the fastest-growing countries in central and Eastern Europe. In August its finance ministry said economic output was expected to contract 3.9% in 2020 due to the COVID-19 economic lockdown, before rebounding as much as 4.9% in 2021. 
Key quote: Martin Slabbert, MAS chief executive officer describes the Oppenheimer acquisition as “being a validation of MAS’s strategic direction including our broad strategy to divest from Western Europe for redeployment in Central and Eastern Europe, as well as the company’s sound handling of the pandemic.” 
Read the full story: 

Ares Management Corporation

Story: New European Property Fund

By: RealAssets 
Summary: Ares Management Corporation has raised €573m for its value-add European property fund, an investor’s meeting document reveals. The New Mexico State Investment Council (SIC), which approved a $75m (€61.6m) commitment to the Ares European Property Enhancement Partners III this week, says Ares is expecting to hit its €1bn capital raise target in the spring of this year. 
Key quote: A spokesperson says, “There are many assets in Europe that can be acquired at a discount, which makes it attractive. The fund will have a significant portion of its return, 40% to 50%, coming from income which the investor sees as a benefit.” Read the full story:

Story: Global CRE investment ‘to rise 50%’ 

By: Colliers 
Summary: Colliers anticipates a 50% surge in global investment activity in 2021 as global real estate markets rebound. The survey results indicate that 98% of investors across all regions aim to expand their portfolios this year, with approximately 60% looking to expand by more than 10%. 
Key quote: Tony Horrell, head of capital markets, global, at Colliers International, says, “Longer-term tailwinds in the property sector remain intact. With a massive volume of equity raised globally and the need for real assets, investors are eager to deploy pent-up capital and pursue opportunities during the year. We expect to see movement up the risk curve this year, with investors exploring all types of assets from senior care homes to public infrastructure projects.” 
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