QIC’s Shopping Centre Fund (QSCF) has welcomed the Clean Energy Finance Corporation (CEFC) into the Fund’s investor base, with an $80 million equity investment.
Managing Director of QIC Global Real Estate, Michael O’Brien, said: “This is an important milestone for QSCF, enabled by QIC GRE’s commitment to driving environmental performance across its Australian retail portfolio, in alignment with the Fund’s investor-endorsed strategy.
“Our strong relationship with the CEFC, and our ongoing focus on continuous improvement in ESG performance, assists us in our active pursuit of becoming a market leader in achieving net zero emissions across our Australian retail portfolio.
“In alignment with this objective, we are delivering tangible sustainability improvements such as upgrades and automation of centre plant and equipment, installation of LED lighting and the portfolio-wide roll out of PV solar technology.”
QSCF is one of QIC GRE’s flagship investment vehicles, with interests in retail assets across Australia valued at circa $15 billion (as at December 2019).
QSCF Fund Manager, Michael Fattouh, said: “The CEFC’s substantial equity investment into QSCF is a result of a three-year-long relationship, commencing in 2017 with a $200 million debt facility, repaid in 2020, and bolstered in 2019 via CEFC’s $30 million cornerstone investment into QSCF’s world-first retail Climate Bond certified green bond.”
CEFC CEO Ian Learmonth welcomed the strong focus on emissions reduction being embraced across the assets of QSCF.
“We need to take action across all areas of our economy if we are to reduce our carbon footprint, from renewable energy to energy efficient buildings,” Learmonth said. “Shopping centres are very large energy users, which means they offer significant potential for emissions reduction.
“We are delighted to continue our work with QSCF in implementing a range of high impact sustainability initiatives to its considerable retail portfolio which will deliver lower operating costs.
“Through this equity investment with QIC, the CEFC is also able to work alongside like-minded investors who recognise the benefits of developing resilient assets as part of the pathway towards net zero emissions.”