Retail: Four needle-moving deals

A closer look at four major transactions in the space from around the world – and why they matter.

Europe: Oaktree goes shopping in Ireland

Deal: US private equity giant buys Dublin mall

WhenMarch 2018

BuyerOaktree Capital


Value€250 million

Why it matters: This acquisition by the US private equity heavyweight is reported to be one of the biggest retail deals to have taken place in Ireland to date. Located in Tallaght, a popular shopping destination in South Dublin, the Square Towncentre is one of the largest shopping malls in Ireland, occupying a site just under 30 acres in size and offering 160 shops. AIB Real Estate Finance part-financed the transaction.


US: QIC shows faith in US malls

DealForest completes divestiture of first six malls to QIC

When: April 2018


Seller: Forest City Realty Trust

Value$1.24 billion

Why it matters: At a time when the US regional mall sector is increasingly regarded as tired and struggling, this deal shows confidence in the format by a global industry giant. The deal, originally announced in mid-2017, involves Forest City selling a portfolio of 10 malls to QIC in a deal worth $3.175 billion. Divestiture will take place in two tranches. Phase one completed in April.

US: Brookfields in successful mall REIT bid

DealAsset manager buys remaining 66% share in GGP

When: March 2018

BuyerBrookfields Asset management


Value: $15.3 billion

Why it matters: The Toronto- and New York-based asset manager not only makes its biggest ever real estate bet, but the deal signals one of the few successful bids in the last year by a private equity fund for a mall REIT. Brookfields already owns a 34 percent share of Chicago-based retail-focused GGP. By buying the remaining 66 percent, Brookfields will be adding 125 Class A malls to its portfolio. The deal is expected to close in Q3 2018.


Asia: Chelsfield backs Hong Kong retail sector

Deal: Chelsfield and the Pamfleet Group buy Provident Square

WhenDecember 2017

BuyerChelsfield and Pamfleet Group

Seller: Provident Square

Value: $257 million

Why it matters: London-based investment firm Chelsfield entered into a 50:50 joint venture with Pamfleet Group, a Hong-Kong-based investment manager, to buy neighborhood shopping center Provident Square, located in the island city’s the North Point district. The acquisition of the three-story retail asset is Chelsfield’s debut deal in Asia and signals a renewed confidence in Hong Kong’s retail sector due to improving consumer confidence, political stability and the growing number of Chinese tourists.