International investors dominate Australia’s private real estate market

Foreign capital accounted for 74% of total transactions in Q1 of the year, the highest first quarter percentage since 2017, according to deal data house Real Capital Analytics.

Abu Dhabi state fund Mubadala Investment Company’s investment in a $1 billion joint venture with Sydney-headquartered logistics manager LOGOS and private equity firm KKR last month is part of a notable wave of inbound investment in Australia’s property market happening at the moment.

According to the latest research by property transactions data firm Real Capital Analytics, the proportion of the investments in the country’s property market by international investors in Q1 this year was 74 percent. RCA said this was the highest quarterly proportion since 2017.

Stuart McCann, head of international capital for Pacific and SEA at CBRE, told PERE the country’s high credit rating is an important factor in its popularity with institutional investors. It is one of two countries in the Asia-Pacific region with AAA ratings from Moody’s, Standard and Poors and Fitch Ratings.

As it has elsewhere, logistics real estate has led the way in terms of preferred sector for Australia’s international investors. Beyond Mubadala’s investment in the LOGOS-KKR logistics venture, another example of international investment in the country’s industrial sector includes Blackstone’s sale of its logistics business Milestone to Singapore-based logistics specialist ESR and state fund GIC. ESR and GIC beat rival bids from parties including Singapore’s Mapletree and France’s AXA Investment Managers – Alts.

As per CBRE’s data, international capital was responsible for 94 percent of Q1 industrial deals in 2021, again the highest quarterly volume since 2017.