DEALS: Going logistic

As shown by a number of recent deals, European logistics is gaining significant traction with institutional investors. Take Sydney-based logistics property developer and fund manager Goodman Group’s £1 billion (€1.3 billion; $1.5 billion) UK logistics partnership last month.

In the joint venture, Goodman partnered with the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB) and Dutch pension manager APG Asset Management to invest in development, value-add and core UK logistics.

Each investor will commit £200 million for a 33 percent interest, providing the vehicle with a combined initial equity commitment of £600 million and an investment capacity in excess of £1 billion, including debt.

“This investment fits well with our long-term investment horizon as we expect the demand for high-quality logistics space to continue growing significantly,” said Andrea Orlandi, managing director, head of real estate investments Europe at CPPIB.

Orlandi was not the only one to see the opportunity. CBRE Global Investment Partners (GIP), the indirect arm of Los Angeles-based real estate investment manager CBRE Global Investors, also purchased last month a pan-European portfolio valued at €350 million as it looks to kick-start a logistics strategy in the region. The portfolio, comprising seven assets across France, Germany, the Netherlands and Spain, was acquired from clients of the London-based real estate asset management firm TH Real Estate.

The program will primarily target assets across France, Germany, Spain and Benelux. Investments in Central and Eastern Europe will also be considered.
And never to be outdone, The Blackstone Group took control of Certeum, a Helsinki-based logistics and industrial property investment company, after acquiring a 50 percent stake in the company from Varma Mutual Pension Insurance Company last month. Certeum owns 122 European logistics and industrial properties valued at €895.6 million.

According to BNP Paribas Real Estate’s annual European Logistics Market report last month, investment activity in the sector increased by 21 percent in the first half of 2015, with transaction volume clocking in at €10.1 billion.