Akron Group and allied Irish Bank acquire Magna Plaza shopping center in Amsterdam (IR/NL)

Uni-Invest Holding BV has sold the landmark shopping center Magna Plaza in Amsterdam to the Dutch real estate investment fund MP Monumenten NV. Akron Group sourced the property on behalf of AIB Private Banking, the wealth management division of Allied Irish Banks, p.l.c., with the purchase funded through a combination of equity from private investors and bank funding. The purchase price is €48.1 million. Based on current rents, the purchase price reflects a yield of some 6%. With this acquisition, Akron Group and AIB Private Banking are building on the relationship they established last year.

Magna Plaza was redeveloped in the early 1990s from the city's main post office to a prominent, one of a kind shopping center in the city center of Amsterdam. There are currently some 40 quality shops - including top brands like Replay, Swarowski and the Body Shop - housed in Magna Plaza. The total surface area is 6,500 m². The objectives of the new owner are to further strengthen the healthy, strong position of Magna Plaza, boost visitor frequency and increase the turnover of the shopping center. To that end, some refurbishment and upgrading will be carried out at Magna Plaza.

Next to sourcing this acquisition Akron Group will be responsible for the management of this investment and will work together with SCM Shopping Center Management, which contributes the specific retail experience, with respect to the daily management of the shopping center.

The FGH Bank granted the Senior Loan for the acquisition. CB Richard Ellis advised MP Monumenten NV with the purchase.

Successful Relationship
The relationship between Akron Group, a pan-European real estate investment and asset management company and AIB Private Banking commenced in 2004.

The objective of this relationship is the development of real estate opportunities in the Netherlands for wealthy Irish investors. The first real estate investment was launched in 2004, when two properties were acquired for a total consideration of €20.6 million. The properties comprised of a logistics unit at Schiphol Rijk and a modern office property in the vicinity of Rotterdam Harbour.

"The purchase of Magna Plaza signifies a second step in the now successful relationship. In view of the success of the first two transactions, we want to expand the relationship with at least two further investments in the next twelve months. In this context, the investment in long-term leased office and logistics real estate will take place with an intended investment value of €100 to €120 million. The next transaction is already scheduled for the fourth quarter of this year", says Peter Ulm, CEO of Akron Group for Western Europe.

"This second investment enables us to meet the rising real estate investment demand outside of Ireland and Great Britain from our customers. We're delighted with this subsequent step in the association with Akron Group, an experienced partner in the Dutch market", according to John Wilkinson, Executive Director of AIB Private Banking in Dublin.

Uni-Invest Holding BV is owned by a consortium of investors led by Lehman Brothers Real Estate Partners.

Source: Akron Group

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