LaSalle invests £600m in two UK designer outlet centres

LaSalle invests £600m in two UK designer outlet centres
Cheshire Oaks Designer Outlet Image: Courtesy of LaSalle

LaSalle Investment Management has paid £600m for two prime outlet centres in the United Kingdom, McArthurGlen Designer Outlet Cheshire Oaks and McArthurGlen Designer Outlet Swindon, to Nuveen Real Estate.

The investment was made through LaSalle’s growing Value-Add Investments business line. The assets will continue to be managed by McArthurGlen, Europe’s largest manager of premium designer outlets.

Most of the portfolio value is comprised of Cheshire Oaks Designer Outlet, the largest designer outlet in the UK, which benefits from a catchment area of over 14m consumers. Cheshire Oaks is spread over 400k sq ft and made up of over 160 individual units, providing for a best-in-class shopping experience. The outlet caters primarily to premium brands, with Burberry, Polo Ralph Lauren and Nike amongst its key occupiers.

The smaller of the two assets, Swindon Designer Outlet, is ranked in the UK’s top 10 centres by turnover. Located within reach of major cities such as Bristol, Reading and Oxford, the Centre is over 250k sq ft and has a catchment area of 14.5m consumers. The outlet offers visitors over 100 stores, with Tommy Hilfiger, Calvin Klein and Lacoste amongst the occupiers.

LaSalle intends to undertake targeted capex investment in both assets to expand event areas, increase car parking, enhance customer experience, and improve their ESG credentials. The portfolio benefits from an attractive, inflation-linked and turnover-based lease model.

Blake Loveless, Head of Value-Add Investments at LaSalle, said: “We’re thrilled to be working with McArthurGlen on this exciting venture.  These are two of Europe’s premier outlets and are well-placed within our value-add strategy, which targets attractive risk-adjusted equity returns for real estate investments across Europe.”

Michael Zerda, Head of Debt & Value-Add Strategies at LaSalle, said: “This transaction represents the first large-scale acquisition made by LaSalle’s reconstituted Value-Add Investments business line in Europe. We look forward to unlocking the full potential of this portfolio in the years to come for the benefit of our investors.”

John Ralston, McArthurGlen’s Regional Director, UK & Canada, added: “Having originally developed and managed the successful McArthurGlen Designer Outlets at Cheshire Oaks and Swindon since their openings in 1995 and 1997 respectively, we are delighted to be working with LaSalle on its new investment. This demonstrates our continued confidence in both Centres and in the outlet sector across Europe.”