More Sub Regional Centres Hit the Market

25 June 2021

The recent sale of several Regional and Sub Regional Shopping Centres has encouraged other landlords to progress their plans for disposals with $725m of assets hitting the market in the last fortnight.

New to market this week are interests in Harbour Town and Mount Pleasant Centres, joining Westfield Helensvale which hit the market two weeks ago.

These opportunities follow the sale of Mirrabooka Square which The Perron Group sold last week to the Fawkner Property Group for $195m, reflecting a 6.97% yield and the sale by AMP Capital of Raymond Terrace Marketplace for $150m at a 5.6% yield. Also sold last week was the $300m portfolio of Neighbourhood Centres by Paul Lederer to IP Generation on a yield of 6%.

The prospects of finding capital support at a yield of near 6% will be music to the ears of those investors seeking to sell down their retail exposures.

The investors in Lendlease’s APPF Retail Fund are hoping to find a buyer for their 50% interest in Harbour Town with hopes of achieving $350m for the asset. Opened in 1999, Harbour Town Gold Coast was Australia’s first purpose-built, outlet shopping centre and is currently the nations largest Outlet Shopping Centre with over 240 stores including brand direct outlet and clearance stores, as well as traditional specialty retailers, alfresco dining, a Reading Cinema complex, Woolworths Supermarket and other retail services.

Lendlease original held a 25% stake in the Centre and in 2019 further increased their stake by 25% after it acquired the Future Funds’ interest for $180 million. That acquisition would have been questioned by many investors as it came at a time that redemptions in the Fund were starting to flow in.

Lewis Land currently owns the remaining 50% of the Centre along with several large development sites around the Centre, but are unlikely to increase their position.

a 100% interest in Vicinity’s Mount Pleasant Centre at Mackay in northern Queensland has also hit the market via CBRE. The 22,519sqm Centre is anchored by Woolworths, Coles and Kmart, and more than 70 speciality stores. The Centre sits on an 8.7ha site, creating potential development upside. Vicinity manage the centre on behalf of Commonwealth Bank Super and are hoping to recoup around $175m for the asset.

Two weeks ago, QIC’s offered up its 50% stake in another Gold Coast shopping mall, Westfield Helensvale for circa $200m. The 43,000sqm centre is anchored by Woolworths, Coles, and Aldi supermarkets with Target and Kmart discount departments stores and 136 specialty tenancies. SCentre hold the balance of the asset. In January this year, QIC sold a 10ha parcel of developable land alongside the Centre for $30m and have been on a program of asset sales over the last few years. In April 2021 the Group sold the Watergardens complex in Victoria to Harvey Norman for $97m and the Q&A Centre in the Brisbane CBD for $350m back in 2019.

At the larger end of the scale, interests in Major Regional Centres held by Dexus and AMP Capital are also seeking buyers. A 20% interest in Pacific Fair held by Dexus is on the market (following their takeover of the management of AMP’s ADPF) whilst there is speculation that the interests of AMP Capital’s private clients who hold a further 50% stake in Pacific Fair and a 50% stake in Macquarie Centre are also on the market. There are few buyers in the market with deep enough pockets to swallow these assets which each have their own challenges and opportunities, but on the right terms there are opportunities within.