World Fashion Centre Amsterdam sold to Swiss parties

Three of the four towers of the World Fashion Centre (WFC) in Amsterdam West have been sold to a syndicate of four Swiss industrial familyenterprises through a sharetransaction. According to marketestimates the buildings have been sold for approx. € 145 mln. for the real estate. The three towers comprise approx. 74.000 m².

The sellers are Museum Vastgoed Groep and Convoy Vastgoed. The sale of the towers is the largest investmenttransaction for 2003. In 2000 the three towers were bought for the amount of € 99 mln. Buyers at that time were Imca Vastgoed, Puis Participations and Museum Vastgoed Groep. The sharetransaction also concerns the management of the WFC, which after the sale will still be done by Mr. Hummel en Mr. Van Beijnum.

The syndicate of the four Swiss industrials claims to have been active on the Dutch and German real estate markets for quite some time. According to the syndicate they already own about 10 buildings in the Netherlands and want expand further on the Dutch market. In the past Swiss parties which were active on the Dutch markets, turned out to be vehicles of Dutch investors.

The owner of the fourth tower is ING Real Estate. This party has had intentions of disposing of this building for a longer time. A preliminary buyingagreement between ING and Fortress was dissolved by a judge on request of the latter. The tower comprises 30.000 m² and has as largest tennant the KLM callcenter (10.000 m²).

At first the empty standing of the WFC was approx. 20% in 2000. In the mean time this has decreased to 8% acording to the selling parties. Contrary to the last couple of years when there were mostly IT-companies in the buildings, nowadays the clothingcompanies are returning.

The management has had an active policy to regain the interest of this sector for the WFC. The delivery of the Modecentrum Almere (Fashioncenter Almere), which aimed at the same targetgroup, served as a catalyst.

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