Hines has acquired 11 logistics assets spanning 350,000 square metres across France on behalf of its Hines European Value Fund 2 (HEVF 2), from Auchan, the French multinational retail group.
The acquisition, which is a sale and leaseback transaction, marks the first investment in France by HEVF 2, with Auchan, one of France’s leading grocery retailers and distributors, remaining the long-term tenant across the entire portfolio.
The 11 assets are located in Paris, Bordeaux, Clermont-Ferrand, Lyon, Nîmes, Strasbourg, Tours and two sites apiece in the Amiens and Lille regions respectively. Hines France will manage the assets.
The HEVF series invests across the major real estate sectors. HEVF 1 focused on core-plus and value add office investments and Hines European Value Fund 2 is most active in the logistics and living space. With this acquisition, logistics is one of the larger sectoral allocations of the fund.
“Many cross-border investors have struggled, in relative terms, to gain exposure to the logistics sector in France, so achieving this scale and quality in one transaction is a great success for HEVF 2. This investment provides in part long-term secured income with a top-tier corporate credit tenant, as well as asset management opportunities to create value, including potentially adding space,” said Paul White, Senior Managing Director and HEVF 2 Fund Manager, at Hines.
“We continue to benefit from the versatility of our European platform with our boots on the ground presence in France, and deep expertise in the logistics sector, the latest example of our ability to procure the best opportunities across all markets and sectors. We look forward to building a strong, collaborative and productive relationship with Auchan as its landlord and asset management partner.”
Xavier Musseau, Country Head of Hines in France, commented:
“The acquisition of one of the major national real estate portfolios – Auchan Retail-Logistics – establishes a significant entry presence in the logistics sector for Hines in France. The logistics sector has good market fundamentals driven by ongoing demand for e-commerce, and lack of supply. This transaction mirrors our commitment to diversification in France as we continue to bolster our exposure to logistics assets. We very much look forward to working with one of the leading retailers in France, who will remain in situ across the portfolio.”