W. P. Carey subsidiary acquires €300-million Metro Cash & Carry Italia S.p.A. Fund (IT)

W. P. Carey & Co. LLC (NYSE: WPC), the global investment management company specializing in corporate real estate financing, has announced that a subsidiary of one of its publicly-held non-traded REIT affiliates, CPA®:17 - Global, has acquired substantially all of the economic and voting interests in a fund that owns 20 stores leased to Metro Cash & Carry Italia S.p.A. ('Metro Italy').

Metro Cash & Carry

Metro Italy is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Metro AG, the world's fourth largest retailer.

Metro Italy is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Metro AG, the world's largest cash and carry operator and, with reported revenues totaling €67 billion in 2010, the world's fourth largest retailer.

Metro AG has guaranteed Metro Italy's obligations under the leases. The value of the investment, which was made by CPA®:17 L.P., was approximately €300 million.

The 20 stores are primarily located in the middle and northern part of Italy and represent approximately half of Metro Italy's total Italian portfolio.

The investment is W. P. Carey Group's first in Italy and brings the total international assets under management, outside the U.S, to approximately US $3.5 billion. The fund is managed by BNP Paribas Real Estate Investment SGR p.A.

H. Cabot Lodge, III, President and Head of European Investments at W. P. Carey & Co. Limited said: "The transaction marks our first investment in Italy and continues to represent our interest in European acquisitions. During the past 12 months, we have provided almost €600 million in alternative financing to major companies across Europe. We are delighted to be entering a new market and to be adding Metro AG to our list of long term obligors."

Jennifer Lucas, Director and member of W. P. Carey's European investment team, added: "In the case of the Metro Italy transaction, the combination of a strong German parent company and assets critical to their Italian Cash and Carry business is consistent with W. P. Carey's established investment criteria and disciplined risk management approach."

Source: Pelham Bell Pottinger

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