French private equity firm Ardian agreed to acquire the Wappenhalle office premises and business park complex in Munich from Leipzig-based real estate asset management firm Publity AG. The deal is the first investment made by Ardian’s Real Estate Europe Fund (AREEF).
The acquisition of this high-profile office and business center, one of the city’s landmark sites, is the first investment made by Ardian Real Estate. The complex around the historic Wappenhalle, or Coat of Arms Hall, which comprises 33,700 sqm of office space, 1,200 sqm of warehousing, and 544 parking spaces, is located directly opposite the new Munich convention and exhibition center in München-Riem, the city’s convention center district.
The modern high-grade office complex consists of the Wappenhalle, a listed building originally built in 1939 and extensively refurbished in 2002, and nine further office buildings. Up until 1992, Wappenhalle served as the arrivals hall of what was then Munich’s main airport, München-Riem. The site is 20 minutes from Munich’s main railway station, and just 25 minutes from Munich Airport, and is accessible by both subway and bus. It’s also situated close to Munich’s third-biggest shopping mall, the Riem-Arcaden. With a total of 24 firms renting space, the property has a diversified, long-term tenancy structure. Ardian Real Estate is planning to increase the value of this asset through active asset management.
The acquisition is in line with Ardian Real Estate’s investment strategy to focus on major cities in the Eurozone’s three largest economies, Germany, France and Italy, where Ardian already has an extensive background in direct private investment. Ardian Real Estate will target significant commercial property assets – particularly office complexes and inner-city mixed-use units – which are worth on average more than €100 million, in the core-plus and value added segments.
Bertrand Julien-Laferrière, head of Ardian Real Estate, said: “This is Ardian Real Estate’s first investment, and so it is a significant moment. We completed this deal just three months after entering this segment in the German market, which is a great achievement. The office complex fits in perfectly with our investment strategy, which targets high-potential office real estate in the major cities of Europe’s core markets, and seeks to significantly enhance rental income through active asset management. With highly experienced senior teams based in Frankfurt, Paris and Milan, Ardian Real Estate is set to become a major player in Europe’s property market. We hope to announce additional acquisitions in some of the targeted large cities in France, Italy and Germany in the coming months.“
“The Munich real estate market is one of the most dynamic in Europe,” said Thomas Olek, CEO of publity AG. “The sale to Ardian France confirms that investors from all over the world are looking for investments in the Bavarian metropolis.”
”Munich is one of Europe’s most interesting real estate investment locations,” said Bernd Haggenmüller, managing director, Ardian Real Estate. “The Wappenhalle is one of Munich’s landmark sites, and is a high-quality property offering great growth potential. We shall continue to seek out such core-plus buildings of this type, as well as value added real estate, in Europe’s top-tier cities.“
NAI Apollo acted as agent in this off-market transaction. Legal advice to Ardian was provided by Herbert Smith Freehills, and Publity AG was advised by CMS Hasche Sigle. Technical due diligence on behalf of Ardian was conducted by REC Experts.
Ardian, founded in 1996 and led by Dominique Senequier, is an independent private investment company with $60 billion in assets managed or advised in Europe, North America and Asia.
Photo: Dominique Senequier, Founder and president of Ardian.