Pirelli confirms talks with RREEF for German real estate portfolio

A statement issued by the listed Italian firm says talks are underway with German retailer Arcandor over the acquisition of a property portfolio, though no agreement has been reached on terms yet.

Italy’s Pirelli Real Estate has confirmed it is in talks to buy a German real estate portfolio from department store and mail order company, Arcandor.

In a statement issued in response to recent media reports and to comply with Italian stock exchange rules, the company confirmed it had teamed up with RREEF, the alternative investments arm of Deutsche Bank to make a bid and that “negotiations are currently underway.”

However, in move to downplay anticipation that a deal will be announced imminently, the Italian company went on to say: “Any agreement has yet to be reached, and no economic terms and conditions have been defined yet. As of today, it is not possible to estimate the date of signing of a possible agreement.”

German newspaper Handelsblatt reported yesterday that the retailer was expected to sell the retail portfolio in the next three days, citing sources familiar with the matter. Also yesterday, The Wall Street Journal said Pirelli and RREEF were “close” to acquiring the properties.

Arcandor, formerly known as KarstadtQuelle, is selling its stake in a property joint venture set up in 2006 with Goldman Sachs Whitehall Funds.

It sold a 51 percent stake to Whitehall for €3.7 billion ($5.4 billion) and decided to offload the remaining 49 percent stake earlier this year.

Arcandor’s chief executive officer Thomas Middelhoff has told reporters the company expects to raise around €800 million from the sale.

RREEF declined to comment when contacted by PrivateEquityRealEstate.com.