Investment and asset management firm Oryx Real Estate Partners has acquired a 5-acre (20,200 m2) logistics site in Milton Keynes, marking its debut UK logistics investment.
Pembury Real Estate will act as development partner for the project, which has an estimated development value of between £25 mln (€29 mln) and £30 mln.
According to Oryx, the sector continues to witness robust occupier demand and an attractive entry price point, with values now stabilising following a period of correction.
Fawaz Sulaiman AlRajhi, chairman of Oryx, said: 'After a period of being active in the logistics market, we exited our positions in 2020. Following the correction in land values over the past years and the continued potential of rental growth we believe it is an opportune time to re-enter the market.
'We value the UK real estate market highly due to its landlord-friendly legislation, longstanding international interest and with attractive opportunities arising due to liquidity requirements and growing distress. This sentiment is shared by our clients, and we look forward to continuing serving them across strategies and risk profiles.'
The company’s investment pipeline comprises some £300 mln of additional logistics sites, offices, residential blocks, and opportunistic distressed assets, with deals valued up to £50 mln in advanced stages of consideration.
The acquisition was undertaken on behalf of Middle Eastern clients of Oryx, including Saudi Arabian family offices, and highlights growing appetite for UK real estate from the region.
The site, located 3 kms from the A5, one of the UK’s major arterial routes, has been acquired from distribution firm WH Barley, which is vacating the building.
Oryx, together with Pembury Real Estate, will bring forward a new 110,000 ft2 (10,220 m2) speculative urban logistics unit which is targeting a BREAAM Excellent and EPC A rating, with sustainability features including EV charging points and rainwater harvesting on site. A planning application has been submitted.
Johan Eriksson, managing partner at Oryx, commented: 'Increased interest rates and economic headwinds have led to a decline in speculative development for logistics units which means that state-of-the-art, sustainable warehouse product suitable for a range of tenants will continue to command rental growth as operators commit to expanding distribution networks and nearshoring operations.
'Looking at our pipeline, we expect the near future to be busy given the opportunities available across various UK regions and real estate sectors.'
Oryx has built a UK real estate portfolio worth over £180 mln since it began deploying capital in 2020, having invested across sectors and the risk spectrum, capturing core, value-add and development opportunities.