CLS acquires interest in Catena (SE)

CLS has announced that it has acquired an interest in Catena AB. CLS bought as an investment, via one of the Group's Swedish subsidiaries, 3,192,800 shares in Catena at a cost of SEK 364.0 million (approx. €36 mln) which represents 27.61% of the share capital of Catena. CLS is now the largest shareholder in Catena. The transaction consideration is being paid part from cash and part debt financed.

Catena is a listed Swedish real estate company that owns and manages well located commercial properties in Sweden, Denmark and Norway.

Catena's main tenant is Bilia, which is the leading company in the Nordic area of car sales and services. Bilia leases 93% of Catena's portfolio on long leases, the majority being in excess of 10 years and indexed. Bilia is listed on the Stockholm Stock Exchange with a market capitalisation of SEK 3,053 million (approx. €310 mln).

As reported in Catena's latest Annual Report for the year to 31 December 2006, gross assets were SEK 2,439 million (approx. €241 mln) and net profit after taxation, both current and deferred, inclusive of property revaluation uplift, was SEK 255 million (approx. €25 mln). Net profit after current taxation but excluding property revaluations and deferred taxation was SEK 80 million (approx. €8 mln).

Catena's Interim Report for first quarter of 2007, states that they own 29 properties with a book value of SEK 2,234 million (approx. €221 mln) after the sale of four properties at 22% above year-end valuation and has contractual annual rental of 168.5 million (approx. €17 mln). The retained profit fot the first 3 months of trading of 2007 shows a 74% increase compared to the same period in the previous year, reflecting both valuation uplifts on the existing portfolio and realised profits on disposals.

Executive Chairman, Sten Mortstedt, commented, "I am very pleased that CLS has acquired a 27.61% stake in Catena, as we have great confidence in the Nordic market and the potential financial performance of the company."

Source: Hansard

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