Busy new year for Slough Estates in Continental Europe (UK)

Slough Estates International ("SEI" or "the Company") has yesterday announced a number of transactions in France, Germany and Belgium.

SEI's headquarters, Slough, UK.

SEI has entered into a 50:50 joint venture agreement with Capital & Continental to develop the 26,500m² Portes de France office scheme in St Denis, overlooking the Stade de France, Paris. The highly specified scheme will provide two interconnected office buildings either side of the A86 motorway. The project will be visible from both the motorway and the Stade de France and will benefit from a particularly high profile in the market, with the Rugby World Cup taking place in France in late 2007.

SEI has also signed a new 5/9 year lease with high fashion retailer "Paul and Joe" on 1670m² at its new light industrial park in Le Blanc Mesnil to the north of Paris.

Over the Christmas and New Year period SEI agreed to sell a light industrial property in Hamburg to Halverton for a gross disposal price of €12.3 million, resulting in a 2005 profit of €2.5m. The property - part of the Group's trading portfolio in Germany - provides a total of 12,368m² of light industrial accommodation and is let to 19 tenants.

In a 50:50 joint venture with KBC, SEI has agreed to acquire two light industrial properties in the Brussels periphery with strong medium and long-term redevelopment potential for a gross purchase price of €5.25 million, reflecting a net initial yield of 8.4%. The properties provide a total of 5,640m² of office and light industrial accommodation and are let to nine tenants. They currently produce €441,000 per annum.

SEI's Managing Director in Europe, Walter Hens, said:

"This is a busy beginning to the year for Slough Estates cementing our position as one of the leading providers of flexible business space in Continental Europe. We continue to expand our footprint in key markets, including participating in flagship developments such as the Portes de France office scheme in St Denis, which complements our existing development pipeline in the suburban Paris office markets. The recent acquisition of Grontmij Real Estate International also demonstrates our commitment to the high growth markets of developing Europe. We look forward to further expansion in 2006."

Elsewhere in Continental Europe, SEI's main interests are in Brussels, Dusseldorf, Paris and Amsterdam and, through the recent acquisition from Grontmij, operations in the Czech Republic, Hungary and Poland.

During 2005 SEI acquired a major site close to Schiphol airport which provides a 100,000m2 development opportunity. More recently in December last year, SEI acquired a sale and leaseback portfolio in Germany of €163 million from Karstadt Quelle AG and acquired the Central European development arm from Grontmij bv.

Source: Slough Estates

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