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Valad Europe, Angelo, Gordon buy €37m distressed portfolio

The two firms have bought the Equinox Portfolio of office buildings in the Netherlands that were originally acquired by Deutsche Bank on behalf of its DB Real Estate Opportunities IB fund in 2005.

Valad Europe and US firm Angelo, Gordon & Co have teamed up for the first time to buy a portfolio of offices in the Netherlands that Deutsche Bank originally invested in during 2005 on behalf of its $1.2 billion global DB Real Estate Opportunities IB fund.

The so-called Equinox Portfolio comprises nine office buildings totalling 540,000 square feet in the Randstad area and one in Groningen. Let to 37 occupiers including serviced office group Regus, the portfolio has a weighted average lease term of three years.

This is the first joint venture Valad Europe has struck a deal with Angelo, Gordon & Co, which as previously reported by PERE, is in the middle of raising its first ever dedicated opportunity fund in Europe called AG Europe Realty Holdings.

Christian Bearman, Valad Europe’s chief operating officer, said the partners would be implementing “an intensive asset management strategy” focussed mainly on existing tenants, letting vacant units and repositioning others to boost income and capital values.

He added: “The Equinox Portfolio is representative of the opportunities starting to emerge from some of the larger non-performing loan books in the Netherlands.”

The buyers did not attach a value on the deal, but according to a notice published on the Irish Stock Exchange, the properties were sold for €37 million. The original borrower is called Randstad, which was set up by Deutsche Bank in 2005 when it bought a portfolio from BPF Bouwinvest on behalf of DB Real Estate Opportunities IB. Lips Capital Group, a privately-owned property investment group with a presence in The Netherlands and Germany, was also an investor in the deal.

The Dutch office market collapsed in the wake of the global financial crisis of 2008 with excess supply leading to vacancy rates climbing alarmingly.

DB Real Estate Opportunities IB was closed to investors in January 2004 and collected $1.2 billion of commitments, with investors consisting primarily of US and European institutions and high net worth individuals.

Capita Assets Services is the special servicer for the securitised portfolio known as European Property Capital 3 plc.