Madison International Realty has acquired 38,000m² of assets in Bjorvika, the new urban infill development in the centre of Oslo and the country’s largest urban project. The Bjorvika development is composed of six distinctive development stages – Sorenga, Sorengkaia, Munch Brygge, Barcode, Bispevika North and Bispevika South. To bring the assets together under one management platform, Madison has acquired Sorenga, Sorengkaia and the associated parking facilities at Sorenga, as well as entered into an unconditional SPA to acquire Munch Brygge. Furthermore, Oslo S Utvikling (OSU) has accepted a bid from Madison for the ground-level commercial assets in Barcode and the northern part of Bispevika. OSU will continue the development of Bispevika South which is not included in the transaction. With these transactions, Madison has secured ownership and control of the majority of the ground floor properties in Bjorvika.
Bjorvika, which is uniquely located in immediate proximity to Norway’s largest public transportation hub and the Oslo fjord, has already established itself as a new CBD in Oslo. It will also become Oslo’s new cultural district with several of Norway’s most prominent cultural institutions such as the Norwegian National Opera & Ballet, the new Munch Museum and the new Deichmanske Public Library.
An integral part of the strategy is to create a vibrant, open and inclusive ‘urban floor’ with a focus on the growing F&B segment. The ‘urban floor’ assets are at ground level and will include retail, F&B, leisure and other services and amenities for Bjørvika, while separately-owned and -managed offices and residential units will be located on higher levels. When fully developed, the total area will host approximately 12,000 residences and more than 20,000 employees.
Rolf Thorsen, CEO of Oslo S Utvikling, said: “Our vision is to develop Bjorvika into Norway’s most attractive area, and we are pleased to sell the urban floor to a buyer who will bring this vision to life. OSU continues to develop residential units and offices in Bjørvika, as well as commercial assets located at other land plots that we control in Bjorvika. Until the execution of the share purchase agreement, we will continue the leasing process in Barcode and Bispevika North.”
Carucel Eiendom, owned by Carl Erik Krefting and his family, will oversee the asset management of the assembled properties. The investment represents Madison’s third acquisition in Norway, all facilitated by the Norwegian investment bank Arctic Securities.
Derek Jacobson, Co-Chief Investment Officer at Madison International Realty, commented: “We have worked closely with Arctic Securities since 2012 in connection with our previous transactions in Norway. We are very pleased that they earlier this fall presented us with the business idea of securing ownership of the property in Bjorvika, which we believe will be value enhancing for the area’s future development. The area has all the prerequisites for becoming Norway’s most attractive urban district. Successful implementation of the urban floor, through securing ownership of the properties in their entirety, is critical to optimize the area’s full potential. The developers, with OSU as the developer of Barcode, Bispevika North and Bispevika South in the forefront, have done a great job setting the scene for the urban floor, and together with Carucel, our desire is to fill the scene with vibrant tenants.”
Carl Erik Krefting, CEO of Carucel Eiendom, added: “International trends show that consumers prefer to spend money on experiences rather than consumer products, and we would like Bjorvika to be a place where visitors, local residents and employees can enjoy a wide range of dining, shopping, cultural and outdoor experiences at the doorstep of the Oslo fjord.”