(LONDON) – Hines, the international real estate firm, has acquired 11 logistics assets spanning 350,000 square meters 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 HEVF 2 is most active in the logistics and living space. With this acquisition, logistics is one of the larger sectoral allocations of the fund.
Paul White, Senior Managing Director and HEVF 2 Fund Manager, at Hines added:
"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.
"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, comments:
"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."
Hines France continues to broaden its portfolio with a greater focus on the logistics and living sectors. This latest transaction marks further diversification into the logistics sector. The French logistics market is expected to benefit from strong fundamentals with rising demand, partly driven by accelerated trends in changing consumer behavior, combined with constrained supply in the context of demanding planning and permitting rules.
HEVF 2’s capital raising is concluding with successful speed of deployment. In parallel, with this investment, the Fund will be almost 75% allocated to 9 investments across France, Italy, Germany, UK, the Netherlands and Spain with several other investments also in exclusivity.
Hines was advised by Lacourte Raquin Tatar, Lasaygues, PwC, Etyo and BNP Paribas Real Estate.
Hines is a privately owned global real estate investment firm founded in 1957 with a presence in 240 cities in 27 countries. Hines oversees a portfolio of assets under management valued at approximately $160.9 billion¹, including $81.7 billion in assets under management for which Hines serves as investment manager, and $79.2 billion representing more than 172.9 million square feet of assets for which Hines provides third-party property-level services. Historically, Hines has developed, redeveloped or acquired approximately 1,450 properties, totaling over 485 million square feet. The firm has more than 180 developments currently underway around the world. With extensive experience in investments across the risk spectrum and all property types, and a pioneering commitment to ESG, Hines is one of the largest and most-respected real estate organizations in the world.
Since entering Europe in 1991, Hines has grown its European platform to include offices in 16 cities as well as a presence in 62 cities in 13 countries. Hines oversees a portfolio of assets under management valued at approximately €26.3 billion of assets under management in Europe, including €21.9 billion for which Hines serves as an investment manager and €4.4 billion representing more than 3.8 million square meters of assets for which Hines provides third-party property-level services, in Austria, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Netherlands, Poland, Spain and the United Kingdom.
Founded in 1995, Hines in France operates as a developer, investor (equity and third party) and asset manager. Currently, Hines in France is developing 450,000 square meters of offices, including the HEKLA Tower in Paris La Défense and the DUO Tours in Paris (13th), two projects designed by Jean Nouvel. Through its Investment Management business, Hines in France manages a portfolio of €2.4 billion of assets comprised of office and retail assets including the prestigious Parisian addresses of 114 Avenue des Champs-Elysées, 213 and 223 rue Saint-Honoré, and the Marché Saint-Germain. At the end of 2020, Hines in France announced its ongoing diversification into logistics and residential real estate. Hines SGP, Hines' chartered management company, received approval from the AMF in December 2018. It manages a portfolio of €700 million of assets.
More information about the group: www.hines.com
1. Includes both the global Hines organization as well as RIA AUM as of December 31, 2020.
About Hines European Value Fund 2 (HEVF 2)
HEVF 2 is a euro-denominated, Luxembourg-based investment fund launched in December 2019. Managed by Hines, its objective is to acquire a portfolio of core-plus and value add profile commercial real estate investments throughout the major European markets on behalf of an institutional investor group. Whilst the fund has broad flexibility across sectors, the portfolio is largely focused in Logistics, Residential and Office usages.
HEVF 2 follows its predecessor HEVF 1 (2017 vintage) in continuing the flagship HEVF series for Hines in Europe, alongside the Hines European Core Fund (HECF) open-ended core flagship vehicle. HEVF 1 raised €721 million of equity commitments, exceeding the original fund target size by over 40%. HEVF 2 secured €637 million of investor commitments in its initial closing in December 2019, and held a number of subsequent closings through 2020. The final closing is expected to take place by July 2021.