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GPT grows logistics portfolio and discusses sale of Wollongong Central and Casuarina Square

Wollongong Central, owned by the GPT Wholesale Shopping Centre Fund

The GPT Group today announced the acquisition of a portfolio from Ascot Capital, comprising 23 Logistics assets and one Office asset for $681.7 million. GPT also confirms it is in discussions with two separate parties regarding the potential divestments of its Wollongong Central and Casuarina Square shopping centres.

Wollongong Central is owned by the GPT Wholesale Shopping Centre Fund (GWSCF) and Casuarina Square is owned jointly by GPT and GWSCF. In a recent statement to media, GPT said it will update the market as appropriate and that there is no certainty that these discussions will lead to either transaction being completed. Meanwhile, the settlement of the Ascot Capital portfolio transaction is expected in November 2021.

GPT’s Chief Executive Officer, Bob Johnston, said: “The Ascot portfolio with a nine year WALE and strong tenant covenants is a great addition to GPT’s existing $3.5 billion Logistics portfolio, and is in line with our strategy to continue to grow our exposure to the Logistics sector through developments and acquisitions. The acquisition will increase GPT’s investment portfolio weighting to the Logistics sector to 26%, progressing us closer toward our medium- term target of approximately 30%. Growth in the sector will also be realised through GPT’s Logistics development pipeline, with an expected end value of approximately $1.4 billion.”

The acquired portfolio is 75% weighted to eastern seaboard states and the ACT. The 23 Logistics assets acquired, totalling 161,700m2 of gross lettable area, are located across Australia, and are fully leased with a weighted average lease expiry (WALE) at 30 September 2021 of 9.8 years.

The 6-level 10,200m2 Office asset acquired is well located in the Canberra CBD, with a WALE of 4.7 years at 30 September 2021. Approximately 70% of the acquired portfolio by income is leased to Government, ASX listed or multinational entities which is in line with GPT’s existing portfolio. Three Office assets and one Logistics asset from the original portfolio being marketed for sale by Ascot Capital were not acquired by GPT.

Johnston added: “Strong levels of take up for prime Logistics space has resulted in low vacancy rates in the sector and demand is expected to continue to be underpinned by growing investment in supply chain infrastructure. The Ascot portfolio acquisition will increase our Logistics portfolio to $4.1 billion and reaffirms GPT’s significant position in the Australian Logistics market.”

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