Scentre Group has offloaded the Sydney CBD office towers above its Westfield mall to US giant Blackstone for $1.52 billion, announcing it will use the proceeds to buy back $800 million of Scentre securities.
The billion-dollar deal represents one of Sydney’s largest-ever commercial property purchases.
Located at 100 Market Street, and 77 and 85 Castlereagh Street, the transaction involves Blackstone acquiring a 299-year leasehold interest in the office assets.
Scentre Group chief executive Peter Allen said the group would retain ownership of Westfield Sydney and Sydney Tower.
“Our development of the Sydney Office Towers in 2011 and ongoing investment until now has created significant value for security holders.
“The transaction price represents almost $800 million in additional value created compared to our investment cost and has generated an unlevered internal rate of return of over 16 per cent per annum for the Group.”
Scentre said it has now released $2.1 billion in capital to pursue “strategic objectives”, also following the sale of its 50 per cent stake in Westfield Burwood for $575 million last month.
The forecast distribution for 2019 remains unchanged at 22.60 cents per security.
The security buy-back program will commence after the 2019 half year results announcement, expected in late August.