APPF Retail divests 50% stake in Harbour Town Gold Coast

The Lendlease managed Australian Prime Property Fund Retail (APPF Retail) has reached conditional agreement on the sale of its 50% interest in Harbour Town Gold Coast to Vicinity Centres for circa $358.0 million.

Lewis Land Group (‘LLG’) will retain its 50% interest in the asset and will continue to manage the property whilst Vicinity will undertake all leasing activity.

A premium direct factory outlet with a total GLA of approximately 55,000 sqm, Harbour Town Gold Coast services a growing residential catchment, and in December 2018 it opened the redeveloped ‘Harbour Town Eats’ dining precinct.

Mr Grant Kelley, CEO and Managing Director, said: “Today’s announcement reflects our strategy to invest in premium retail assets where we can buy well and add value. Harbour Town is located in an attractive trade area and the centre’s annual MAT is more than double the average MAT for Vicinity’s current outlet portfolio and is expected to grow at more than 3% per annum to 2031.”

In summary, Mr Kelley said, “We will continue to optimise our asset portfolio by actively considering acquisition opportunities where we can add value as well as divestment opportunities that make strong strategic and economic sense for Vicinity and its securityholders.”

APPF Retail received strong interest from prospective buyers for its stake in Harbour Town Gold Coast, which was attractive due to the tightly held nature of the retail outlet mall sub-sector, surrounding population growth and tourist spend during normalised trading conditions.

Vicinity was introduced to the transaction and was negotiated by CBRE’s Simon Rooney, in conjunction with McVay Real Estate as joint agent.

“Harbour Town Premium Outlets represented an opportunity to acquire immediate scale in highly sought after but rarely traded sub-sector,” Mr Rooney said.

“The Expressions of Interest campaign was hotly contested, attracting domestic and offshore institutions, and syndicated investors.

“That underlines the demand for assets in Southeast Queensland across sub regional and other retail categories, and joint venture opportunities with major institutional owners, especially for sites offering future development upside.”

Scott Mosely, Managing Director Investment Management, Lendlease said “This is a very good outcome for our investors and is in line with the Fund’s capital management strategy that includes providing liquidity to our investors who have sought it.

“APPF Retail is focused on executing its urban growth centre strategy, incorporating mixed use placemaking to create vibrant precincts that support changing consumer needs around lifestyle, technology and shopping.

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About Warwick Petschack

Warwick has over 25 years of property investment and management experience. Principally responsible as Managing Director for Capital Management Australia and Joint Managing Director for Chauvel Capital Partners and Editor of Australian Property Markets News.

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