GIC confirms €950m Maximus logistics portfolio buy

Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund GIC has confirmed the acquisition of a €1 bn European logistics portfolio from funds managed by Apollo Global Management, as reported by PropertyEU's sister publication Europroperty last month.

Europroperty reported on Nov 21 that GIC had made a winning bid for the assets which encompass 28 properties largely across Germany, Benelux and Poland.

GIC owns P3 Logistics Parks, the specialist owner, manager and developer of European logistics properties. P3 has investments in nine European countries but its roots are particularly strong in CEE - mainly in Czech Republic but with a few assets in Poland - and in Germany.

GIC said that it is paying a net price of €950 mln for the portfolio as part of a strategy to scale up its fully-owned P3 logistics platform and reinforce P3’s position 'as a leading developer and manager of logistics properties in Europe'.

Covering over 1,000,000 m2 of industrial space, the Maximus portfolio also includes a minority of assets in Slovakia and Austria. Tenants are diversified across different industries such as automotive, e-mobility, distribution, e-commerce and last-mile logistics.

The portfolio will be managed by P3 going forward. The acquisition is expected to close during the first quarter of 2020.

Lee Kok Sun, Chief Investment Officer of GIC Real Estate, said, 'As a long-term value investor, logistics continues to be an attractive sector for GIC. It is set to keep growing, supported by strong e-commerce growth, and we expect it to generate steady income streams in the long run. Our P3 logistics platform in Europe is an important part of our global logistics portfolio, and this acquisition of high-quality, income-producing logistics assets across Europe is aligned with our strategy to efficiently scale up P3, and effectively strengthen its position as a leading developer and manager of logistics properties in the region.'

Apollo set up a joint venture in 2017 to amass a logistics portfolio, with Palmira Capital Partners. The following year the US group obtained a five-year loan from Aareal Bank of up to €800 mln to finance the assets.

Otis Spencer, Chief Investment Officer, P3 Logistic Parks, added, 'P3 is well-placed to integrate the Maximus portfolio into our existing pan-European warehouse platform. Our on-the-ground local presence means that we are equipped with the team and resources to successfully manage, and add value to, the assets and end-customer. This acquisition is one of the largest real estate investment deals in Europe this year, and the largest in Germany. This reflects our multi-faceted investment strategy to grow our market share in the pan-European market through both development and acquisition. With the support of our owner, GIC, we are actively looking for further investment deals to strengthen our position as one of Europe’s leading developers and managers of logistics properties.'

Cushman & Wakefield advised Apollo on the sale.

On the back of huge investor interest in the sector, this year has been an extremely busy one for logistics portfolio sales. CBRE believes 2019 could be the strongest year on record bar 2017, when Blackstone’s all-time record €12 bn sale of Logicor saw volume that year soar to €43 bn.

In 2019, CBRE expects pan-European volume, including the UK, to come in at between €30 bn and €34 bn.

There are a number of other ambitious portfolio transactions ongoing. GreenOak’s sale of 46 warehouses for €1.3 bn is pending. That deal, to a consortium of European and Korean investors led by Patrizia, could complete before the end of the year. Eastdil is advising GreenOak.

Carlyle Group is another private equity firm with a logistics package in the market. It appointed CBRE to sell the ‘Hub & Flow’ portfolio about two months ago and is believed to be looking for circa €300 mln. The 17 assets are in France, mostly around Paris, in Lyon and in Marseilles.

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