Valad’s Dutch JV attracts €200m

Valad Europe, the London-based private equity real estate firm, has set up a joint venture with an unnamed investor to acquire a portfolio of assets in the Netherlands

Valad Europe has set up a new joint venture, the Valad Netherlands Diversified Partnership, with an unidentified investor that has committed €200 million to acquiring Dutch real estate. The partnership will invest in the office, industrial and retail sectors in the European country and target both single assets and portfolios, primarily in lot sizes ranging from €10 to €100 million.

Valad, which in a similar move last October announced a JV focused on central European retail assets, this time is focusing on a diversified portfolio of assets throughout the Netherlands to capitalize on a ‘window of opportunity’, as it called it.

Christian Bearman, head of corporate development and operations, said in a statement: “Valuations and occupancy levels in certain sub-markets of the Netherlands are currently out of synch with the underlying economic recovery, providing an attractive counter cyclical opportunity for the Valad Netherlands Diversified Partnership to invest on large scale in high quality offices, industrial and out-of-town retail assets in specific strategic locations.”

Kick-starting the core plus, value add partnership, Valad has completed a €140 million purchase of the UNO portfolio, which is a collection of six assets totaling 635,000 square feet of office and retail space from Unibail-Rodamco.

This is just the start as Valad and its investor wants to build up to €500 million portfolio of assets, it revealed, and will keep leverage to around 60 and 70 percent of the asset value.

The strategy comes against a background of improving fortunes for the Netherlands’ economy. In May last year, the European Commission increased its economic forecasts for the country because of rising investments and increasing household consumption. More recently, experts have been raising forecasts further upwards.

In December, for example, the Netherlands Bureau for Economic Policy Analysis said the Dutch economy would grow at a slightly faster pace than previously thought because of a weaker euro and lower oil prices. GDP is now expected to accelerate to 1.5 percent in 2015, compared with a previous estimate of 1.25 percent, it said.