Hines, the international real estate firm, and German investment company Universal-Investment have acquired a retail asset on Glasgow’s prime shopping street from Hermes Investment Management, the £24.1 billion manager focused on delivering superior, sustainable, risk-adjusted returns to its clients – responsibly.
The acquisition was made for an institutional real estate fund on the platform of Universal-Investment, administered and managed on behalf of Bayerische Versorgungskammer (BVK), Germany’s largest pension scheme group with approximately €62 billion assets under management. This deal is part of its €1.3 billion investment mandate from BVK which is targeting prime high-street retail assets across Europe.
229-249 Buchanan Street is located in the heart of Glasgow’s retail core directly opposite the city’s premier shopping centre Buchanan Galleries and immediately adjacent to Buchanan Quarter. The building, which has a listed façade, is 65 percent occupied by three leading fashion and sports brands, with one unit vacant.
The property represents the first acquisition in the UK for the BVK European high-street retail account, which Hines was awarded in December 2015. Acquisitions of prime high-street retail assets were previously made in Oslo and Milan totalling over €100 million of value.
Jake Walsh, director Hines UK, said, “This represented a rare off-market opportunity to acquire a prime retail asset of scale in an excellent location in the city’s retail core. It fully meets our criteria and offers an immediate value-add opportunity with the vacant unit.”
Chris Taylor, head of private markets at Hermes Investment Management, said, “The sale of 229-249 Buchanan Street comes at an appropriate time in the market cycle for a value-add asset in this location. We will be redeploying the capital from selling the property into other opportunities.”
Lars Huber, Co-CEO of Hines Europe, added, “We are very pleased with the speed at which we have been able to identify and acquire core-plus and value-add assets in prime retail locations for BVK, and we are making good progress in building their portfolio. We are continuing to target other assets meeting this criteria across 20 countries in Europe and look forward to announcing further transactions in the near future.”