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MSREI and C2 to build £500m logistics platform

The pair have launched a UK-wide multi-let industrial platform with a focus on acquiring individual estates and portfolios with a minimum £2m value.

Morgan Stanley Real Estate Investing (MSREI), the New York bank’s real estate investment management platform, and London-based property investment manager C2 Capital have joined forces to build a £500 million (€670 million; $762 million) prime UK multi-let industrial portfolio.

The joint venture, called Industrials.co.uk, has been seeded by MSREI and C2 with four multi-let industrial estates and the pair’s intention is to grow Industrials.co.uk into a UK-wide industrial platform, with a focus on acquiring individual estates and portfolios with a minimum value of £2 million. It is understood to be the first UK investment from Morgan Stanley Real Estate Fund (MSREF) VIII Global, the firm’s latest opportunistic fund which held a $1 billion first close last July.

The venture also marks a re-entry by former Slough Estates executive Roger Carey into the industrial property market as a non-executive board member and co-investor in Industrials.co.uk. After leaving Slough Estates in 1996, Carey subsequently built up Industrious and led a management buy-out in partnership with MRSEI in the 2002.

C2 Capital will be leading the activities of Industrials.co.uk, initially as an external asset manager, with a view to growing it into a standalone business.

“C2 Capital is well placed to deliver on our strategy of acquiring good quality multi-let industrial across the UK, specifically by working with our network of regionally based investment advisors,” Julian Carey, co-founder and managing director of C2 Capital, commented. “Combining this with the expertise and track-record in multi-let industrial of the former Industrious team, and Morgan Stanley Real Estate Investing’s ability to fund and grow new investment vehicles, we are looking forward to quickly establishing ourselves as a significant player in the sector.”

Other investors in Industrials.co.uk include Ian Melia and John Keogan, respectively the former finance director and former property director of Industrious.

“In light of the UK’s improving economic situation, we believe the timing is right for this launch”, said Shamik Narotam, head of UK for MSREI. “We look forward to working closely with Julian and Roger to create a best-in-class multi-let industrial landlord. We are particularly pleased to link up again with members of the old Industrious team to help deliver this vision.”