EURO NEWS: Nordic invasion

While many firms tend to hit the pause button during the summer months, EQT Real Estate, the real estate arm of Nordic private equity giant EQT, has been one of the busier operators during this period.

Over the last two months, the firm, which launched its property business in 2015, is understood to have raised €200 million in capital for its debut real estate vehicle, the €500 million EQT Real Estate Fund, and has already made the first two deals through the fund. The firm declined to comment.

The two transactions, in Paris’ office market, came at a total cost of around €84 million and encompassed almost 400,000 square feet of quality office real estate in the city. The most recent of these deals was the acquisition of the Le Doublon building, near the city’s financial district La Defense.

“We believe Paris will offer good risk-adjusted opportunities over the coming years as it is one of Europe’s largest office markets, benefiting from urbanization trends that boost demand, a deep pool of local and international institutional investors, and infrastructure investment that is opening up new undersupplied submarkets near strategic transport hubs,“ said founding partner and co-head Rob Rackind.

Founding partner and co-head Edouard Fernandez noted that EQT’s strategy is to focus on gateway cities. “These cities offer attractive investment opportunities due to their deep and liquid markets, high levels of take up, and a favorable supply and demand imbalance,” he added.

Another key market for EQT is Germany, where the firm has its eyes firmly fixed on major cities such as Cologne, Munich, Berlin, Frankfurt, Hamburg and Dusseldorf.

Fernandez also said the business was monitoring the situation in the UK following the EU referendum result. “It is still early days to assess the impact of the referendum on occupier demand and investment pricing,” he said.