EXCLUSIVE: Blackstone kicks off £965m Logicor debt hunt

The private equity real estate firm is looking to take money off the table via a refinance for its European logistics portfolio, revealed PERE's sister publication Real Estate Capital.

Blackstone is searching for close to £1 billion of new debt to refinance the UK and French portfolios of its Logicor industrial platform, PERE's sister publication Real Estate Capital can reveal.

Eastdil Secured has been appointed to find the debt. The private equity firm is looking to take money off the table, having seen significant appreciation in values via market improvement and asset management within the portfolio since it began buying for the entity in 2012.

It is looking for £680 million to refinance its UK assets, which would reflect a loan-to-value slightly above 70 percent. In France it is searching for €400 million, which reflects a loan-to-value in the region of 65 percent. Both mandates have five-year terms.

The opportunities are likely to attract investment banks alongside larger ticket mezzanine lenders due to their scale.

Existing lenders on the UK portfolio include Wells Fargo and LaSalle, which has provided mezzanine to Logicor, whilst Citi has been one of Logicor’s biggest funders on the Continent.

It is thought that Blackstone could look to sell Logicor towards the end of 2015 or early 2016. It has built up a portfolio of more than 72 million square feet of assets across 13 countries in Europe worth close to €4 billion. 

Blackstone has the options of looking to exit through either an IPO or a trade sale. An IPO has been mooted as the most likely avenue for the Logicor platform, as it was for Blackstone’s logistics platform in the US – IndCor Properties.

However, last year Blackstone filed and subsequently pulled an IPO of IndCor as a result of an approach by Global Logistic Properties – Asia’s largest logistics company – to buy the company for $8.1 billion. The deal completed earlier this month. In Europe a trade sale could also ultimately be a more straightforward option if a buyer emerged that was capable of consuming the whole of Logicor.