Challenger to sell sought after stake in Sunshine Marketplace

31 August 2022

A 50% interest in the dominant Sunshine Marketplace shopping centre in Melbourne’s inner west growth corridor has been put up for sale.

JLL’s Nick Willis and Sam Hatcher have been exclusively appointed on behalf of Challenger to sell its stake in the Vicinity managed shopping centre, via an International Expressions-of-Interest campaign.

The offering comes as retail investment supply in Melbourne sees record low levels. According to JLL Research, Victorian retail assets are being tightly held in 2022, with transactions this year down 84% on 2021 numbers, and down 78% on the five-year average.

The 34,200 sqm sub-regional shopping centre is anchored by Woolworths, Big W and Village Cinemas and supported by approximately 50 specialty tenants. The centre occupies an ultra-low site coverage of just 28%, positioned on an irreplaceable 12.22 hectares of freehold land.

The site is just 750 metres from the Sunshine train station, which will benefit from the significant infrastructure spends for both the Metro Tunnel and Melbourne Airport Rail Link which are due for completion in 2024 and 2029 respectively.

Mr Willis said, “The offering provides an opportunity to not only acquire a dominant Melbourne asset that is underpinned by an unparalleled landholding, but also an ability to partner with market leading retail manager Vicinity.

“These opportunities are unique and typically reserved for larger institutions, however the price point of Sunshine Marketplace opens this opportunity up to private investors, developers, managers and syndicators. The buyer will benefit from the sheer scale and high-quality management that Vicinity offer, not only in retail but also mixed-use development,” said Mr Willis.

Sunshine Marketplace is a sub-regional shopping centre occupying one of the largest landholdings within Metropolitan Melbourne for the sub-sector. The site forms one of nine Melbourne metropolitan activity centres – underpinning the future upside and mixed-use potential of the asset.

The property has secured development approval for a new entertainment and leisure precinct with an 84 key serviced apartment tower plus a pending DA for a modern 10-level office building with approximately 13,000 sqm of net-lettable area (NLA).

Mr Hatcher said, “Whilst the property is currently operating as a high performing convenience-based shopping centre, it is underpinned by the underlying significant landholding. The ability to acquire over 12 hectares of freehold land adjoining a major train station in Melbourne is unprecedented. The centre will evolve into a true mixed-use development over time, which is simultaneously being supported by surrounding planning changes and major infrastructure development.

“The surrounding infrastructure development with the Melbourne Airport Rail Link will be key to unlocking the future mixed-use development potential of Sunshine Marketplace. The shopping centre controls the largest landholding in Sunshine, just metres from the train station and with a site coverage ratio of only 28% – the increased densification of the site is inevitable,” said Mr Hatcher.

Earlier this year the Victorian Government announced that Sunshine Station will be expanded to add a new regional platform by 2029, as part of its transformation into a transport superhub and the key connection point for the regions, Melbourne CBD and the airport. The Sunshine Station project is part of the broader Melbourne Airport Rail Link project, which is being jointly funded by the Australian and Victorian Governments.

Once Sunshine’s transformation into a transport superhub is complete, trains will run every two to three minutes at peak times, including airport services every ten minutes and an approximately 11-minute trip to Melbourne Airport.

International Expressions-Of-Interest for Sunshine Marketplace at 80 Harvester Rd, Sunshine close on Wednesday 21st September 2022 at 2.00pm (AEST).