Intu has entered into agreements to acquire a 50% interest in Westfield Merry Hill shopping center, a 100% interest in Westfield Derby shopping center and a 100% interest in Sprucefield retail park for an aggregate consideration of £867.8 million (approx. €1.03 billion) to be financed by new debt facilities totaling £423.8 million and a fully underwritten Rights Issue.
The Rights Issue is intended to raise gross proceeds of approximately £500 million and net proceeds of approximately £488 million.
Merry Hill is a super-regional prime shopping center in the West Midlands and is located 10 miles west of Birmingham. It has 1.4 million ft² over two retail levels with 214 shop units and a further 0.3 million ft² of other adjacent retail space and attracts around 25 million customer visits annually. Merry Hill is number 13 in PMA’s ranking of UK shopping centers.
Derby is an enclosed town center shopping center comprising 1.3 million ft² of space with over 180 shop units over two levels and a 12 screen cinema and attracts around 25 million customer visits annually. Derby is number 18 in PMA’s ranking of UK shopping centers.
Sprucefield is a retail park in Northern Ireland originally developed in 2003. Sprucefield comprises five retail units and has a total floor area of 230,000 ft².
Together the Assets generate net annual rent of £54.9 million. The Sellers currently hold their interest in Merry Hill jointly with QIC. Following the Acquisition, QIC will retain its 50% holding and Intu will be appointed as asset and development manager for Merry Hill. It is intended that Merry Hill will be rebranded as intu Merry Hill.
Commenting on the transaction, David Fischel, Chief Executive of Intu, said: “The transaction is a rare and attractive opportunity to acquire a further two prime shopping centers in line with our strategy to focus on the UK’s largest and most successful destinations. The acquisition strengthens Intu’s position as the leading owner, developer and manager of prime UK shopping centers filling in gaps in our national coverage and extending the footprint of our nationwide consumer facing brand and digital strategy. We are delighted to establish a partnership with QIC, a major global investor, at Merry Hill.”
Source: Intu Group