A Norwegian group of investment funds has signed a real estate portfolio management contract with Newsec, which manages commercial properties throughout the Nordic and Baltic region. The total value of the new portfolio is 145 million. In the Baltic countries Newsec currently manages a total of 115 commercial properties of various types, occupying a combined area of 620,000 m².
The new contract covers a real estate portfolio of 36 properties, comprising 23 Norfa and nine Maxima supermarkets, three logistics centers near Vilnius and the Durapart factory in Panevezys. It also includes buildings on the 2-hectare site of the former Tauro alus brewery in central Vilnius, where there are plans for a combined commercial and residential development project totaling 40,000 m² during the next few years.
"The global economic crisis had a negative effect on the returns achieved by Norwegian investors in the Baltic countries," says John Afseth, Chairman of two Norwegian investment funds.
"In order to rebuild investors' trust in Lithuania and the whole Baltic region, we were therefore looking for an active manager that would increase the value of our portfolio. Our decision to choose Newsec was based on their professionalism and practical experience gained during the last three years, which were difficult for Baltic economy and the real estate sector."
He added that Newsec's principles of working with tenants meet both international property management standards and investors' requirements.
Ricardas Cepas, Manager of Newsec Baltics, says that the real estate management market in the Baltic countries is becoming more professional, and companies are starting to look for specialized partners that offer specific real estate solutions for business and governmental institutions.
"This contract is one more proof that the time for experiments with real estate in the Baltic countries is past. Everybody is now starting to do what they really understand," he says.
Newsec Baltics currently manages 115 commercial properties of various types, with a total area of 620,000 m². Last year the turnover of shopping centers managed by Newsec grew by 8%, and this year there are plans for a 15% increase in the flow of customers at the shopping centers. In 2010 Newsec Baltics managed 749 tenants.