Brookfield consolidates European platform

The asset manager has sold its interest in Canary Wharf to its new European operation, Brookfield Europe, in deal valued at £333.8m, as part of plans to create single platform. The move is part of Brookfield's efforts to refinance its debt on a longer-term basis.

Brookfield Asset Management has created a single platform for its European office properties, development and asset management operations, to be known as Brookfield Europe.

As part of the move, the Toronto-based real estate developer and investment firm has sold its 15 percent interest in London’s Canary Wharf Group to the new platform.
The stake was sold by Brookfield’s forest and property arm, Brookfield Investments Corporation, for “cash proceeds” of £107.6 million ($158 million; €124 million). The deal, according to a statement from the firm, had a fair market value of £333.8 million. Brookfield Investments will take a 42 percent stake in Brookfield Europe.

The creation of Brookfield Europe has enabled the company to refinance its debt on a longer-term basis, according to previous statements from the company.

Last month, Brookfield said it had extended the debt maturity on its Australian operations. Around $1.6 billion of debt had been set to mature in April 2009. However, after agreement with lenders, Brookfield said the debt would be reduced to $800 million, with $140 million payable in April 2009 with the remainder due the following year.

Brookfield said it would “permanently finance its Australian real estate operations with asset-specific property mortgages in the future”.