Charter Hall, Allianz Pick Up Aldi Distribution Centres


Charter Hall and global investor partner Allianz Real Estate has added two new assets owned by German supermarket giant Aldi to its joint venture logistics fund.

The distribution centres, which were designed and built by Aldi, sold on a seven-year leaseback agreement with multiple seven-year options. The deal was struck on a yield of 4.75 per cent, with 3 per cent per annum rent reviews.

The portfolio comprises one logistics facility at Derrimut in Melbourne’s west and one in Staplyton-Yatala, halfway between Brisbane and the Gold Coast.

A 50-50 joint venture between Charter Hall Group-managed $6 billion wholesale fund CPIF and Allianz Real Estate will add the assets, which comprise a total gross lettable area of 106,614sq m, to the joint venture’s initial $648 million acquisition of four Aldi leased logistics assets in June.

That transaction comprised Sydney facilities in Minchinbury and Prestons, a Melbourne facility in Dandenong and a Brisbane facility in Brendale.

The latest deal further’s Charter Hall’s position as the largest industrial landlord to the four major supermarket operators in the country—Coles, Woolworths, Aldi and Metcash.

Of Charter Hall’s $11.5 billion of industrial assets, $3.5 billion is now leased to the four supermarket giants.

Charter Hall chief executive David Harrison said the company’s ability to quickly access the on-going growth and resilience of grocery retailing in Australia had been a consistent thematic driving the strength of its industrial and logistics portfolio.

“These two assets were acquired off-market and demonstrate the strong relationship we have developed with ALDI as a major cross-sector tenant customer and Allianz as a major investor customer of Charter Hall.”

Sale and leaseback deals have been the main focus for the group with several large-scale acquisitions this year.

Earlier this year Charter Hall picked up a $682 million Ampol petrol station portfolio bought with Singaporean sovereign wealth fund GIC and three glass factories leased back to Anthony Pratt's Visy group for 20 years.

JLL led by Tony Iuliano negotiated the transaction on behalf of Aldi.
▲ JLL led by Tony Iuliano negotiated the transaction on behalf of Aldi.

Allianz Real Estate Asia Pacific chief executive Rushabh Desai said the latest Aldi deal would push its logistics exposure to over $3.2 billion across Australia, Japan, China, and India.

The unlisted wholesale fund CPIF—Australia’s largest pure-play industrial and logistics unlisted property fund—is made up of 76 assets and 2.6 million square metres of space.

About 90 per cent of the portfolio, by value, is in the land-constrained eastern seaboard markets of Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane.

The portfolio currently has a 52 per cent exposure to the consumer staples sector as well as a more than $1 billion “develop to core pipeline”, both of which were attractive to investors.

Late last month, Charter Hall tapped the market raising $2.6 billion for the fund, winning strong support from global institutional investors amid the economic uncertainty.

Two weeks earlier, Charter Hall closed a second, oversubscribed, $1.3 billion capital raising riding on the coat-tails of a $1.3 billion capital raising in April.

Both capital raisings were oversubscribed, demonstrating the strong interest from domestic and offshore institutional investors seeking exposure to the Australian logistics sector.

Earlier this year, investment in Australian industrial property matched the flow of money into office property for the first time, fuelled by the e-commerce boom underpinning logistics real estate and investor uncertainties over longer-term workplace occupancy.

For the first time in almost a decade, quarterly industrial deal volumes outpaced office investments in the September quarter, according to Cushman & Wakefield.

The real estate firm recorded $2.24 billion of industrial transactions in the three months to September, while quarterly investment into the Australian office market totalled $2.12 billion.

In a separate report Colliers reported that across the first nine months of the year, $3.57 billion of industrial property exchanged hands, up 5.6 per cent year-on-year.

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