Investec Real Estate has provided Norton Group with an £80 mln (€92 mln) financing package to fund the development of a state-of-the-art distribution centre in Suffolk, which is 100% pre-let to The Range, a UK retailer which is a Norton Group subsidiary.
On completion, the 1.2 million ft2 (112,000 m2), £200 mln scheme will serve as The Range’s main South East of England distribution hub and create around 1,650 new jobs.
The highly sustainable development is targeting an EPC A rating and BREEAM ‘Outstanding’ certification. Features will include solar PV panels, air source heat pumps, smart energy systems and 160 active EV charging spaces.
Ed Boughton at Investec Real Estate commented: 'Demand for tenant critical, high quality logistics space has remained strong throughout the current period of macroeconomic volatility, with occupiers seeking highly sustainable, best-in-class buildings with excellent transport links.
'This financing is a fantastic opportunity to assist The Range, a significant Investec client, with its growth ambitions. Being able to support it through multiple offerings across the bank is a great demonstration of our relationship banking ethos.'
Value retailer The Range opened its first store in 1989 and now has over 210 stores nationwide as well as large distribution centres in Bristol and Doncaster.
The distribution centre is part of the firm's aggressive growth strategy that will see it significantly increase its existing store portfolio, in addition to its growing online presence.
The development is located at Gateway 14, East Anglia’s newest and largest business, innovation and logistics park.
Norton Group is a long-standing client of Investec and this first real estate debt transaction broadens the relationship between the two parties.
Alex Simpkin, CEO at The Range, added: 'This is not only a major landmark in the expansion of The Range’s estate; it is positive news for the UK retail sector. Together with Investec’s expertise and understanding of real estate financing, we are effectively injecting millions of pounds into the economy at a time when it is much needed.'