LBBW finances €1.1b Potsdamer Platz redevelopment

Stuttgart-based bank LBBW has agreed to provide Brookfield Properties €1.1 bn in financing for the redevelopment of Potsdamer Platz in Berlin.

'The Potsdamer Platz quarter is one of Berlin's prominent landmarks — we are really looking forward to accompanying Brookfield Properties as the financing partner for this project,' said Patrick Walcher, global head of real estate at LBBW.

'The financing represents another important milestone in our histories and strengthens our long-standing business relationship. Once again, the close, cross-border cooperation between our teams has proven successful. Brookfield Properties benefits from one-stop financing thanks to our established syndication platform, which allows us to perform a sole underwriting of this scale,' Walcher added.

LBBW acted as agent, arranger and security agent, according to the bank. In addition to replacing a bank consortium for the entire scheme, LBBW said it would also co-finance retail space repositioning measures at the site.

Berlin's Potsdamer Platz quarter was redesigned in the 1990s following the planning and designs of a team of architects, led by Renzo Piano, Hans Kollhoff and Sir Richard Rogers. Since December 2015, the Potsdamer Platz quarter (consisting of 17 buildings, ten streets and two squares) has been managed by global real estate services company Brookfield Properties.

The quarter's total rental space spans some 270,000 m2 and has been awarded the silver certificate by Germany's DGNB (German Sustainable Building Council). Among the office tenants are firms such as Bain & Company, Bombardier and Pfizer. Brookfield Properties has achieved over 90% occupancy rate (as of autumn 2018) across the portfolio following acquisition and repositioning of the estate. Planning is currently underway for a repositioning of the retail space inside the Potsdamer Platz Shopping Arkaden, with construction scheduled to commence January 2020.

'Since we took over the management of Potsdamer Platz at the end of 2015, we have already been able to implement large parts of our overall strategy,' said Karl L. Wambach, senior vice president of Brookfield Properties.

'Over 90 % occupancy rate across the portfolio is proof of this and moving forward, we are planning an extensive modernisation of the Potsdamer Platz Shopping Arkaden and upgrading the public realm to modernise and enhance this dynamic destination for all those who work, live and visit.'


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