Institutional Real Estate Europe
July 1, 2011: Vol. 5, Number 7Buy For $150.00 Add to Cart
Don't Fear the Norsemen: Nordic Markets Appear Safe Thanks to Favorable Economic Underpinnings, but Competition for Core Properties Can Be Fierce
At the risk of oversimplification, southern and northern Europe have taken variant fiscal and economic paths in recent times. Laid back southern Europe is plagued by sluggish economies, some still contracting, and unsustainable debt-to-GDP ratios. The more austere north is (mostly) perceived as a safe haven of sorts, having its economic house in order. We should not be surprised, therefore, that investors gazing toward the north-west corner of Europe above the 54th parallel see a sunny outlook for real estate on the Scandinavian Peninsula.
Wind in the Sails: Markets Are Laying the Foundations for Growth, and Investors Are Recognising the Benefits of an Allocation to Real Estate
The commercial real estate recovery that many investors hoped would take root has now started in earnest. Prime assets in core markets have led the way with strengthening occupancies, diminishing concessions and rising rents. The signs pointing to this recovery have not gone unnoticed, as evidenced by last year’s re-emergence of equity and debt capital and the pronounced decline in initial yields.
Here Comes Trouble, Again: Why Real Estate Is Increasingly Viewed as the Achilles
In a recent article in the Financial Times*, John Plender addresses two developments that are very relevant, and troubling, for the real estate investment industry. Firstly, financial crises have become increasingly common. Secondly, real estate is generally playing an increased role in crises over time. If real estate is recognised as a volatile asset class and increasingly is viewed as the Achilles’ heel of the financial system, a number of detrimental effects could follow, from lower investor appetite to tougher regulation.
Managers Reshuffle the Deck: Some Firms Retrench, While Others Seek to Grow Asset Base
The chaos of the financial markets’ implosion and the ensuing Great Recession has subsided, although significant uncertainty remains. Now that many economies around the world are showing slow but sustainable growth and liquidity has returned to the commercial property markets, investment managers around the globe are moving to shore up their portfolios and also take advantage of favourable buying opportunities and low interest rates.
Almacantar to Buy London Office Tower
Almacantar, a property company based in London and Luxembourg, has agreed to buy the Marble Arch Tower, a high-rise office building in London’s West End, from clients of Orchard Street Investment Management.
Arminius Buys €1 Billion in Property from Eurocastle
Arminius Funds Management, on behalf of two investment vehicles, has acquired the controlling majority stake in special purpose vehicles holding 28 German properties from Eurocastle Investment Ltd, which is an investment vehicle managed by an affiliate of US-based Fortress Investment Group.
Atrium Buys Warsaw Shopping Centre for €169.5 Million
Atrium European Real Estate, a real estate company focused on central and eastern Europe, has acquired a shopping centre in Poland for €169.5 million, plus an additional €1.5 million on recovery by Atrium of a value-added tax refund.
- AXA Buys Spanish Petrol Stations
Czech Shopping Malls Trade for €96 Million
Two shopping malls in the Czech Republic under the Olympia Shopping Centre name have been sold by the C1 Fund to a Czech investor for €96 million.
Estavis to Develop Apartments at Former Brewery in Berlin
Germany-based Estavis has acquired a former brewery in Berlin with plans to redevelop the property for residential and commercial space for a total investment volume of approximately €43 million.
European Commercial Property Bounces Back in 2010
Commercial property in Europe returned 8 percent in 2010, measured in local currency, according to the IPD Pan-European Annual Index. The performance was substantially better than that of 2009, when the index returned 1.4 percent.
Henderson Buys London Portfolio
Henderson Global Investors has agreed to buy a group of properties in London known as the Leadenhall Triangle at an estimated price of around £190 million (€213 million).
Hines Buys Logistics Park in Moscow
Hines Global REIT, a public unlisted REIT sponsored by Houston-based Hines, has acquired an approximately 70,000-square-metre warehouse complex near Moscow’s Sheremetyevo Airport.
Invesco Buys London Office from JV for £141.5 Million
One Finsbury Circus, a 19,500-square-metre office building in London, has been sold by a joint venture between Hermes Real Estate Investment Managers Ltd, on behalf of the BT Pension Scheme, and clients of LaSalle Investment Management.
Orchard Street Buys UK Warehouse Portfolio
Orchard Street Investment Management, on behalf of a pension scheme client, has acquired a 48,500-square-metre portfolio of industrial properties in south-east England for £50.4 million (€56.6 million).
- Schroders to Launch OPCI for French Investors
UKCPT Buys UK Leisure Scheme
UK Commercial Property Trust (UKCPT) has acquired a 15,800-square-metre leisure-focused retail property in a suburb of London.
USS Buys UK Head Office of Siemens
Universities Superannuation Scheme (USS) has acquired the UK headquarters of Siemens, located in Frimley, for £42.35 million (€47.5 million), for a net initial yield of 7.0 percent.