AXA Investment Managers – Real Assets , a global leader in real asset investments and the leading1 real estate portfolio and asset manager in Europe, announces that it has signed an agreement to acquire , as part of a core strategy on behalf of a client, the entire issued share capital of NorthStar Realty Europe Corp. a NYSE listed real estate investment trust, which owns a significant portfolio of 12 office properties and two hotel assets with a combined value at €1.1 billion 4 located in key European cities within Germany, the United Kingdom and France. The transaction follows an announcement by NRE in November 2018 that its Board of Directors was undertaking a strategic review of the business, including a possible sale of the Company.
Under the terms of the Acquisition, AXA IM – Real Assets has agreed to pay an estimated price per NRE share equivalent to U.S.$16.95 per share, based on spot foreign exchange rates2 and U.S.$ 17.03 based on forward foreign exchange rates3, which represent respective premiums of 15.8% and 16.4% to the Company’s share price of U.S.$14.63 immediately prior to the announcement of its strategic review. The Acquisition is subject to approval by majority of NRE shareholders. Completion of the Acquisition is expected in the fourth quarter of this year.
Through a single transaction, the Acquisition provides AXA IM – Real Assets with immediate access to a significant 122,000 sqm (1.3 million sq ft) portfolio of modern, prime, well located office space across Europe’s three core markets. The office portfolio is 96% let, with an average lease expiry of 5.9 years and offers potential for both asset management and further income generation.
The 68,000 sqm German portfolio comprises six office assets including three in the city centre of Hamburg, with the remaining three in Cologne, Münster and Berlin. The two hotels are also in Berlin and comprise 334 rooms across 12,000 sqm in total. There are a further two assets totalling 22,000 sqm in the City and West End of London and four offices totalling 32,000 sqm across a range of locations in central Paris.
Commenting on the acquisition John O’Driscoll, European Head of Transactions at AXA IM – Real Assets, said: “This proposed public-to-private transaction demonstrates our ability to tackle complex deals to unlock opportunities for our clients. The acquisition of NRE is a rare opportunity to secure a significant portfolio of prime modern European offices in a single transaction. The properties, which are located in the major cities of Europe’s largest economies of France, the U.K. and Germany, have high occupancy and produce strong levels of income that are ideally suited to our clients. As well as highlighting our ability to undertake complex deals of scale globally, this transaction also demonstrates our highly flexible 360 degree approach to investing in real estate via debt or equity and through a range of private or public entry points, including corporate acquisitions.”
1 Source: INREV/ANREV Fund Manager Survey – May 2019 – in terms of assets under management
2 Based on spot foreign exchange rates of 1.129 EUR/USD and 1.2595 GBP/USD as of July 2, 2019, per Bloomberg
3 Based on 3-month forward FX rates of 1.1368 EUR/USD and 1.26125 GBP/USD as of 03-Jul-2019, per Chatham
4 Source for portfolio statistics – NRE website
Source : Company